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Legislative framework

 

The Act came into force on 18 January 2001, after passage through Parliament on 8 December 2000. Section 3 of the Act sets out three main objectives:

  • to encourage the additional generation of electricity from renewable sources
  • to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases in the electricity sector, and
  • to ensure that renewable energy sources are ecologically sustainable.

The Act, which established the market for certificates, came into effect on 1 April 2001 and has been amended three times in:

  • 2006—to reflect outcomes of the 2004 review followed by amendments                
  • 2009—to support the expansion of the RET, and
  • 2010—to split the RET into two parts—the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET) and the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).

The Act is supported by:

  • two Charge Acts that provide the rate of charge for the applicable renewable energy shortfall charge
    • the Renewable Energy (Electricity) (Large-scale Generation Shortfall Charge) Act 2000 to support the LRET, and
    • the Renewable Energy (Electricity) (Small-scale Technology Shortfall Charge) Act 2010 to support the SRES
  • The Regulations, which provide more details on a number of issues, including eligibility criteria for renewable energy sources and criteria for accreditation of power stations and small-scale systems. For more information about regulation amendments see 'Amending the Regulations’ under Chapter 3 of this report.
  • Regulations referred to as transitional provisions so that LRET and SRES participants are not disadvantaged by certain legislative and Regulation amendments. As such there are two transitional provision Regulations. For more information about regulation amendments see 'Amending the Regulations’ under Chapter 3 of this report.

In combination, the Act, the Charge Acts and supporting Regulations set the framework for the implementation of the RET (including the LRET and SRES).

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