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The Hon Peter Garrett AM MP
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Senator the Hon. Penny Wong
Minister for Climate Change and Water

The Hon Lindsay Tanner MP
Minister for Finance and Deregulation

Streamlining the Australian Government's climate change programs and making energy efficient choices even easier

Joint media release
12 May 2009

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The Australian Government will invest $64.6 million over four years as part of its contribution to the National Strategy on Energy Efficiency to help Australians choose more energy efficient appliances, homes and buildings, and make residential and commercial buildings more energy efficient.

Environment Minister Peter Garrett said the new suite of measures demonstrated the Government's commitment to encouraging action on energy efficiency across all sectors of Australian society.

"This investment builds on the Government's $3.9 billion Energy Efficient Homes program, driving further energy efficiency across Australia," Mr Garrett said.

"The expansion of energy efficiency labelling and minimum performance standards will help consumers buy more energy efficient appliances, reducing household energy bills and encouraging innovation in smart, cost-saving technologies.

"Australians will also be able to make meaningful comparisons when assessing the environmental performance of buildings. Whether you are buying a home or leasing a large commercial building, energy performance ratings will be made available to help you factor in the benefits of energy efficiency as part of the decision-making process.

"Improvements to the 2010 Building Code of Australia will increase energy efficiency requirements for homes and commercial buildings.

"Collectively, these measures lay the foundation for a nationally consistent approach to energy efficiency, helping households, businesses and the community to lower their energy use and save money. By becoming more efficient, we will help to reduce the energy intensity of the Australian economy overall, which is critical in our transition to a low pollution future," Mr Garrett said.

The eight energy efficiency measures announced as part of the National Strategy on Energy Efficiency in the 2009-10 Budget are:

Appliances and equipment

Residential buildings

Commercial buildings

These measures build on the unprecedented support Government has committed to improving energy efficiency since the 2008-09 Budget, including the $3.9 billion Energy Efficient Homes program.

This package of new and streamlined measures has been developed in response to the recommendations made in the Strategic Review of Australian Government Climate Change Programs, which has been released today with the Government's response to the recommendations.

This package of new and streamlined measures has been developed in response to the recommendations made in the Strategic Review of Australian Government Climate Change Programs, which has been released today with the Government's response to the recommendations.

"Streamlining climate change programs is an important part of the Government's climate change strategy. It will ensure the community receives value for money and the challenge of addressing climate change is dealt with effectively and at the lowest cost to the economy," Minister for Climate Change and Water, Senator Penny Wong said.

The Review considered 58 active climate change programs. It made recommendations about whether they align with the Rudd Government's broader climate change strategy or should be considered transitional programs.

"This will ensure the best use of taxpayer funds, with expenditure being focused on better targeted programs to combat climate change," Minister for Finance and Deregulation, Lindsay Tanner said.

"I would like to thank Mr Roger Wilkins AO for his expertise, time and effort in conducting this Review. The Government welcomes his views on its climate change programs and his broader recommendations on climate change policy," Minister Tanner said.

A copy of the Strategic Review of Australian Government Climate Change Programs report is available at www.finance.gov.au/publications. 

The Government's response to the Review is available at www.climatechange.gov.au/en/minister/wong/2009/media-releases/May/Budget%202009-10/budmr20090512h/wilkinsresponse.aspx 

Commonwealth of Australia