Gas Week

EWN Publishing

Federal election a chance for biofuel industry: voters urged to quiz candidates on renewable fuels

Posted by gasweek on 26 September, 2007

The 2007 election was shaping up as an opportunity for regional Australia to receive some clear direc­tion from the Federal Government on renewable fuel policy, said Western Australian biodiesel maker Bioworks Australia, reported Farm Weekly (30/8/2007, p.38).

Two reviews on biodiesel topics: Policy shifts for biodiesel would be of particular interest for farmers. “It was this current Government that in 1999, as part of the GST reforms, introduced the first rules that provided for renewable fuels in Australia’s fuel mix,” Bioworks managing director Craig Lovelady said. There were two Federal Government reviews, one cur­rently with the Department of Environment Heritage and Water (DEH) looking at diesel stan­dards and considering limiting the blending of biodiesel. The other, by a section of the Department of Treasury, dealt with the Energy Grants Credit Scheme.

Campaign comments: “The first review by the DEH was just a disgrace following the wholesale changes we had in 2006,” Lovelady said. “With much of Mr Tuckey’s electorate in the heart of the agricultural zone that stands to benefit from an emerging biofuels industry, [Tuckey’s] ambivalence to biodiesel and preference for a hydro­gen alternative puts him in contrast to renewable fuel supporter Phil Gardiner standing for the Nationals,” Lovelady said. However, Lovelady was cautious about the ALP alternative. “We are yet to see any policy from Labor on biodiesel and to support them on the basis of expect­ed change may be a false promise,” he said. “Currently, it is only the Greens and Democrats that have positively expressed their support for the industry. It is really up to the people in some of these elec­torates to ask the questions of those wishing to be elected about what they have done and what they are going to do for this industry. People want real action on renewable fuels, not political noise,” Lovelady said.

Farm Weekly, 30/8/2007, p. 38

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