Australian Capital Territory commits to 100% renewables, rejects nuclear

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A motion to power Australia with 100% renewables and ensure the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) remains free of nuclear power and nuclear waste, passed the ACT legislative assembly on 27 June 2024.

Submitted by ACT Minister for Climate Action Andrew Barr and ACT Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Shane Rattenbury, the motion asked that the assembly note the most cost effective and efficient way to cut emissions and provide reliable and affordable electricity in Australia is by delivering renewable energy with storage.

“We face a climate emergency, and we don’t have time to waste. I want to see Australia ramp up efforts to transition to 100% renewable energy as soon as possible, not waste more time pursuing unrealistic and unworkable thought bubbles like Peter Dutton’s nuclear plan,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“With solar and wind resources, it makes far more sense to power our country with cheap, reliable renewables rather than expensive and polluting fossil fuels or nuclear power.”

The motion expressed a commitment to maintaining the ACT’s 100% renewable electricity supply as electricity demand increases into the future. The ACT increased its share of renewable energy supply from 54% in 2018 to 100% by 2020.

“In the ACT we are getting on with the job of transitioning to a zero emissions energy system. The ACT is powered by 100% renewable electricity, we have banned new gas connections and we have committed to phasing out gas use by 2045,” Rattenbury said.

Eight points were included in the motion highlighting the ACT government does not support the use of nuclear power generation and would strongly oppose any plans to do so.

“There is clearly no role for nuclear power in Australia. With our solar and wind resources, it makes far more sense to power our country with cheap, reliable renewables rather than expensive and polluting fossil fuels or nuclear power,” Rattenbury said.

“Building nuclear power in Australia would be financially irresponsible and would push up power prices for all Australians, while creating toxic waste and polluting ecosystems for generations to come.”

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