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Joint Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell
&
Australian Minister for Industry Tourism and Resources
Ian Macfarlane

9 April 2006

Applications locked for $500 million Low Emissions Fund


Applications for the Australian Government's Low Emissions Technology Demonstration Fund have closed with 30 major renewable and new low-emission technology projects applying for funding under the $500 million programme.

A seven-member expert panel will now begin assessment of the applications which have the potential for significant impact on reducing Australia's energy sector greenhouse gas emissions.

Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, said the number and size of the projects was evidence the Australian energy sector, both traditional and renewable, had risen to the Government's challenge.

"Industry recognises that the role it will play in demonstrating new low emission technologies, to reduce Australia's greenhouse gas emissions in the coming decades is critical to Australia's economic prosperity and environmental health," he said.

Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane said the breadth of the applications was pleasing with projects as diverse as biomass energy generation, solar concentrators, landfill renewable power, clean coal and carbon sequestration submitted for consideration.

"The range of proposals encompasses both renewable energy and lower emission fossil fuel - a strong energy mix that Australia needs to ensure its energy future. This will be at least a $1.5 billion investment today for the nation's energy needs of tomorrow," he said.

The panel assessing applications will be chaired by Sydney businessman Paul McClintock and includes John Ralph, Nobby Clark and Ziggy Switkowski as well as overseas representative Ken Humphreys, who has extensive experience in the field of advanced energy technologies.

"These are eminent business people, leaders in their fields when it comes to leading change in sectors that are being transformed by new technology," the Ministers said.

The applications will be assessed over the coming months with ministers expecting to make funding offers early in the new financial year.

For more information about the Low Emissions Technology Demonstration Fund, visit: www.ausindustry.gov.au and type the name of the fund into the search facility

Media Contacts:
Renae Stoikos (Senator Campbell's office) 02 6277 7640 or 0418 568 434
Kirsty Boazman (Mr Macfarlane's office) 6277 7580, 0412 171 444

Commonwealth of Australia