Power companies appearing before a Senate inquiry established by the Australian Greens say the government needs a plan for the orderly retirement of coal fired power stations.
The Senate Environment and Communications References Committee sitting in Melbourne also heard evidence from NGOs, academics and community representatives all backing the need for a plan, a timeline for retirement of coal power stations and the implications of the recent sudden announcement about the closure of Hazelwood.
"When EVEN Australia's biggest power company and biggest polluter AGREE we need a national plan for coal power station retirement, the government should listen," Committee Chair Greens Senator Larissa Waters said.
"Evidence to the inquiry is clear that the lack of a plan for the phased retirement of coal fired power stations is holding back investment in clean energy and is not enabling community and workers to transition."
"Malcolm Turnbull and his Energy Minister can't swan around the globe talking up Australia's climate credentials but refuse to plan for retirement of coal fired power stations at home," Australian Greens spokesperson on climate and energy Adam Bandt MP said.
"Power stations, community groups and workers are now all calling for a plan, but the Federal government has its head in the sand."
"We cannot leave this energy transition to the chaos of the market and let our energy future be decided in the boardrooms of Hong Kong and Paris. Investors need certainty."
Adam Bandt – Adam Pulford, 0429 109 054
Larissa Waters – Lauren Gillin, 0419 626 725