Following on from consultation earlier this year, the Australian Government has released its Future Fuels and Vehicles Strategy. As part of the strategy, the federal department will work with the:
- Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics to investigate charging blackspots in regional Australia and complete a National Hydrogen Infrastructure Assessment to identify rollout priorities.
- Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) on the expanded $250 million Future Fuels Fund, which will launch in early 2022.
- Clean Energy Regulator to develop a new Emissions Reduction Fund method to incentivise transition to electric vehicle charging and hydrogen refuelling infrastructure.
- ARENA on improving heavy road fleet productivity and new technologies through the $24.5 million Freight Energy Productivity Program.
- Australian Taxation Office on guidance for businesses on the tax treatment of low emission vehicles.
- Bring forward improvements to fuel quality (sulfur) from 2027 to 2024.
- Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications if Euro 6 and Euro VI noxious emission standards for light and heavy vehicles should be mandated.
Retained dividends to spend on strategic infrastructure
Following the 2021-22 WA State Budget, government trading enterprises (GTEs) will retain $2.4 billion in quarantined dividends to fund future infrastructure projects (instead of payment to the Consolidated Account). As dividends are typically calculated as net profits over and above the cost of providing facilities, it is expected GTEs will submit business cases for the Department of Treasury to approve use of these funds on projects that deliver an efficient return.
$1.35 billion has already been earmarked by the Water Corporation for the State’s next desalination plant to be fuelled by renewable energy.
In case you’ve missed these latest announcements from members:
- Mineral Resources and Roy Hill agreement to jointly investigate development of a new iron ore export facility at the Port of Port Hedland, including rail haulage.
- Woodside to sell its 49 per cent stake in Pluto Train 2 joint venture to Global Infrastructure Partners.
- Newmont and Caterpillar strategic alliance for the rapid development and implementation of comprehensive all-electric autonomous mining systems.
- Northern Star’s acquisition of Newmont’s power business – The 110MW Parkeston Power Station that provides electricity to the Kalgoorlie Consolidated Gold Mine.
- Yara – World’s first electric and self-propelled container ship to begin a two-year testing period in Norway.
- BHP and Woodside agreement to merge their oil and gas portfolios.
Contact: Linh Nguyen, Policy Adviser – Industry Competitiveness