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The Australian Budget...the Goods, Bads and Where to Next

This year’s federal budget, announced by Treasurer Jim Chalmers was expected to deliver forward-looking policies and investment in our potential as a renewable energy superpower and to support Australians struggling with the rising cost of living.

As Ethinvest MD Trevor Thomas said, “This budget was a mixed bag for Australians and for those interested in ethical and impact investing. There is some real hope in the $23 billion over ten years to kickstart clean energy and decarbonising innovators and businesses but we had hoped the government would do more to address the national housing crisis and support First Nations Australians and universities.”

The Climate Capital Forum, a network of investors, decarbonising companies, philanthropists and climate finance experts founded by Ethinvest’s Blair Palese, did a deep dive into the budget commitments related to the government’s Future Made in Australia Plan with a piece in The Politics. As the piece says, the new budget initiatives for solar manufacturing, the mining and processing of critical minerals and green hydrogen sector as well as expanded funding and investment for the Australian Renewable Energy Authority (ARENA) are definitely strong steps in the right direction.

Chalmers announced $7.1 billion over 11 years from 2023–24 to support refining and processing of critical minerals, which are vital to securing our place in the renewable energy and battery supply chain, but unfortunately it won’t be implemented until 2027. There is also new funding of $549 million over eight years from 2023–24 for the Australian battery sector.

A hydrogen production tax credit is estimated at $6.7 billion over ten years from 2024–25, as well as $8 billion over ten years to support the production of renewable hydrogen and an expanded Hydrogen Headstart program.

Supporting the Australian workforce’s skills transition is also included with programs for regional skills development and women’s engagement in the transition workforce.

We’ll be looking for more support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in an expected dedicated federal plan in the next few months and will be asking the government to do more to address the affordable housing crisis for lower income and young Australians who, right now, are struggling to find and keep a roof over their heads.

To read more, click here.

Watch this space for progress updates.




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