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Glossary, abbreviations and acronyms



Australian carbon credit unit

Air source heat pumps

Air source heat pump water heaters transfer heat from air outside the unit to water stored inside the unit. The air heats a special type of refrigerant (not a CFC) and the energy is used to heat the water.


Australian National Registry of Emissions Units


Australian Public Service

Benchmark price

The maximum amount we would pay for emissions reductions at an auction.


Biomass includes the following fuel sources: agricultural waste, bagasse, biomass-based components of municipal solid waste, black liquor, energy crops, food processing waste, food waste, landfill gas, sewage gas and biomass-based components of sewage, waste from processing of agricultural products and wood waste.

Buyer’s Market Damages

Buyer’s Market Damages allows the Commonwealth to recover the difference between the contracted price and the current market price for the ACCUs that have not been delivered. It represents the additional cost to the Commonwealth of purchasing abatement from alternative projects and makes up for the shortfall in delivery due to the seller failing to meet the requirements of the contract.

Carbon abatement contracts

A contract to sell ACCUs to the Australian Government. Carbon abatement contracts are standard commercial, payment-on-delivery contracts.

Carbon dioxide equivalent CO2-e

A measure of greenhouse gas emissions. Carbon dioxide equivalence is estimated by multiplying the amount of gas by the global warming potential of the gas.

Compliance year

The Renewable Energy Target operates on a calendar year basis, meaning liable entities must surrender large-scale generation certificates for their energy acquisition in the previous calendar year.

Controlling corporation

An entity that must register and report under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007, as defined in section 7 of the Act.


Participants receive one ACCU for each tonne of CO2-e stored or avoided through registered Emissions Reduction Fund projects.

Delivery under the Emissions Reduction Fund

This transaction refers to ACCUs transferred in the ANREU to make a delivery under a carbon abatement contract.


The estimated reduction in demand for electricity from the grid that results from the installation of a solar water heater or air source heat pump.

Greenhouse gas emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions refers to gases produced from human activity, such as carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O). These emissions alter the natural greenhouse effect and encourage atmospheric warming.

The greenhouse effect is created by naturally occurring gases such as water vapour (H2O) that insulate the Earth, preventing the sun’s heat from escaping and keep the Earth at liveable temperatures.


The act of issuing units including ACCUs under the Carbon Credits (Carbon Farming Initiative) Act 2011 and international units in accordance with United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change directions.


A kilowatt is a measurement of power. Power is the rate at which the energy is generated or used. One kilowatt is equal to 1000 watts.

Kilowatt hour

A kilowatt hour is a measure of electrical energy equivalent to a power consumption of 1000 watts for one hour.

Liable entity

A person who, during a year, makes a relevant acquisition of electricity is called a liable entity. Liable entities are mainly electricity retailers.


A megawatt is a measurement of power. Power is the rate at which the energy is generated or used. One megawatt is equal to 1000 kilowatts.

Megawatt hour

A megawatt hour is a measure of electrical energy equivalent to a power consumption of 1000 kilowatts for one hour.


A petajoule is a standard unit of energy. For electricity, one petajoule equals 277.78 million kilowatt hours.

Photovoltaic system

A photovoltaic (PV) system, also known as a solar PV power system or PV system, is a power system designed to convert sunlight into usable electrical power by means of photovoltaic cells.

Power purchase agreement

A power purchase agreements is typically a contract between an electricity retailer and the developer of a large-scale renewable energy power station, to source electricity or large-scale generation certificates created by the power station. Parties can sign a power purchase agreement before a power station is built, as a way to underpin and secure financial backing for the project, or at a later stage.

REC Registry

Renewable Energy Certificate Registry


In certain situations where excess units have been issued, a participant can be required to relinquish units; that is, return them to the Commonwealth. They include situations relating to reforestation, such as the voluntary withdrawal of reforestation projects from the relevant scheme and the issue of units as a result of fraudulent conduct by the recipient.

Renewable energy certificate

Renewable energy certificate refers to both large-scale generation certificates and small-scale technology certificates.

Renewable power percentage

The basis, set out in the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Regulations 2001, for calculating the number of large-scale generation certificates that a liable entity must purchase in a given year.

Reporting transfer certificate holders

A person that holds a reporting transfer certificate (RTC) must complete a final emissions report under s22G of the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007. This report contains information about the RTC facility’s scope 1 and scope 2 emissions and energy production and consumption.

Safeguard mechanism

The safeguard mechanism ensures that emissions reductions purchased through the Emissions Reduction Fund are not offset by significant increases in emissions above business-as-usual levels elsewhere in the economy.

Scope 1 emissions

The release of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere as a direct result of an activity or series of activities (including ancillary activities) that constitute the facility. For example, the emissions produced when coal is burned at a power station are scope 1 emissions.

Scope 2 emissions

The release of greenhouse gas into the atmosphere as a direct result of one or more activities that generate electricity, heating cooling or steam that is consumed by the facility but that do not form part of the facility.

Secondary market

The market for units or certificates issued by the Clean Energy Regulator that occurs between two entities, not including the Clean Energy Regulator.


Senior Executive Service

Small generation units

Small-scale systems that generate electricity. These include small-scale solar panel, wind and hydro systems.

Solar panels

A panel designed to absorb the sun’s rays as a source of energy for generating electricity or heating.


The division of the project area into one or more carbon estimation areas and, if required, exclusion areas.


A sub-standard small-scale system does not meet key clauses in the Clean Energy Council standards and requirements for installation, or relevant Australian Standards, and may lead to premature equipment failure or other issues. The installation work and or equipment should be improved. The system owner should contact the installation company or a qualified installer to rectify the items listed for improvement.


This transaction allowed eligible units to be surrendered from an ANREU account.


An unsafe small-scale system has a safety hazard which poses an imminent risk to a person or property. The inspector shuts down the system and renders it safe. The inspector also advises the relevant state or territory regulatory authority of the nature and extent of the safety risk. The system owner should contact the installation company or a qualified installer to rectify the items listed for improvement.

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