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The Government has tabled its “Future Made in Australia” bill in Parliament

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Labor has brought its "Future Made in Australia" bill to parliament, a plan to turn the country into a "renewable energy superpower".
The Government has introduced its "Future Made in Australia" legislation.

The Federal Government has introduced its long-term renewable technology and green investment plan to Parliament called the ‘Future Made in Australia’ (FMIA).

The legislation sets out a planned mix of public and private sector funding to turn Australia into a “renewable energy superpower”.

Labor introduced the FMIA bill on Wednesday. The Coalition has flagged it may not support the bill, meaning the Government will need support from minor parties or independents to pass the bill.

Renewables

Australia is in the process of transitioning from relying on fossil fuels, like coal and gas, to renewables, such as solar and wind.

The Government has legislated a target for 82% of Australia’s energy to be generated by renewables by 2030. Renewables accounted for nearly 40% of total energy use in 2023, according to data from the Clean Energy Council.

Australia has also legislated a goal of net zero emissions by 2050, where greenhouse gas emissions produced and taken out of the atmosphere are balanced.

What is Future Made in Australia?

The Government says Australia needs more renewable energy infrastructure to support the transition to net zero.

FMIA is its large-scale industrial plan to build more green technologies to support these climate goals.

This includes boosting the production of solar panels, wind turbines and batteries to harness renewable sources of energy, and support the transition away from fossil fuel production such as coal and gas mining.

Funding

The Government included nearly $23 billion for FMIA over the next decade in its 2024/25 Federal Budget.

This includes funding to manufacture green energy technologies and $45 million for an advertising campaign to promote FMIA.

Currently, China dominates production of solar panels and batteries, accounting for more than two-thirds of global supplies.

Jobs

The Government said its FMIA plan will boost domestic employment opportunities, creating a “skilled and inclusive workforce”.

FMIA will also require any net-zero related projects to undergo consultation with affected locals and First Nations communities.

Overseas

The FMIA bill mirrors several other green energy strategies from around the world.

For example, hundreds of billions of dollars are being spent on clean energy initiatives in the U.S. as part of its ‘Inflation Reduction Act’.

The European Union’s Green Deal Industrial Plan is also aimed at accelerating renewables manufacturing across Europe.

Jim Chalmers

Treasurer Jim Chalmers said FMIA is an important part of Australia’s renewable energy future.

When he presented the bill to Parliament on Wednesday, Chalmers said: “We are in the middle of the biggest transformation in the global economy since the industrial revolution.”

He said the plan is “backed by evidence and supported by science.”

Opposition

The Coalition said it “will consider” the bill, but raised questions about what it called a lack of “real detail”.

Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor said the Government needs to focus on reducing inflation, which “continues to damage the Australian economy and vital sectors like manufacturing.”

Deputy Liberal Leader Sussan Ley criticised the Government for its planned $45 million spend on the FMIA advertising campaign.

What next?

The Government’s bill is expected to clear the Lower House (House of Representatives).

However, it may face amendments in the Upper House (Senate) where the Government does not have a majority.

Without Coalition support, the Government will need the Greens and at least two crossbenchers to pass the bill.

The Greens questioned whether the legislation goes far enough to restrict coal and gas operations. It’s not clear if the party will support the bill.

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