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Foreword by the Chair


I am pleased to present the Clean Energy Regulator’s (CER) Corporate Plan 2023-27, which covers the period 2023-24 to 2026-27 as required under paragraph 35(1)(b) of the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act). This plan outlines how we are meeting our purpose and achieving our objectives, continuing to build relationships with our stakeholders and developing staff capability and flexibility in the context of a dynamic operating environment.

Our purpose, to accelerate carbon abatement for Australia, remains our key driver as we work to ensure the success of the recently enhanced Safeguard Mechanism and ongoing abatement schemes such as the Renewable Energy Target (RET) and the Australian Carbon Credit Unit scheme (ACCU scheme), formerly the Emissions Reduction Fund.

We will be focusing on maintaining the integrity and growth of these schemes as well as important development work to streamline carbon markets and develop a Guarantee of Origin program for low and zero emissions energy products. All of these measures will contribute to the target of 43% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2050.

The CER manages the statutory requirements of the RET, ACCU scheme and the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting (NGER) scheme, incorporating the Safeguard Mechanism. We regulate scheme and carbon market participation and compliance, helping participants to understand and meet their obligations.

We also work to provide confidence in the market through the provision of information, systems, and tools to support the transparency and integrity of both supply of and demand for carbon instruments.

Administration of the reformed Safeguard Mechanism, incorporating declining baselines and the introduction of Safeguard Mechanism Credits (SMCs) to achieve a 28% reduction in net emissions from covered facilities by 2030, will be one of the CER’s priorities over this corporate plan.

We will continue working with our participants to ensure they have the right information to support compliance and the high integrity of the programs we administer. Consultation with communities, experts, industry and government remains core to our operating process. We will work with stakeholders to maintain and further strengthen our engagement as we implement government policies and support innovation and new technologies.

Market efficiency measures will be completed during this corporate plan, with the Australian Carbon Exchange streamlining market participation, along with other important systems improvements to reduce handling times and strengthen assurance.

Market transparency and integrity will be enhanced through implementation of the Guarantee of Origin scheme. Guarantee of Origin will support low emissions technologies by providing certification of emissions intensity for low and no emissions energy products, commencing with hydrogen.

We will also continue to develop the Corporate Emissions Reduction Transparency (CERT) report introduced in 2022, which provides a standard independent reporting format for private organisations to detail their emissions reductions outcomes. The design of the CERT report will evolve over the coming years, including to reflect the evolution of domestic and international mandatory and voluntary climate-related disclosure frameworks.

We will also be working with the Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water to progress and administer the proposed Nature Repair Market, if the relevant legislation passes in 2023-24. The Nature Repair Market will establish biodiversity certificates aimed at assisting organisations to support biodiversity projects through a market mechanism.

We will be further enhancing engagement with communities involved in, or affected by, the schemes we administer during the period of this corporate plan, including specific engagement with First Nations communities across a range of activities.

In this exciting time of change for the CER, as we ramp up abatement and broaden our work, our people remain our greatest asset. My commitment to a vibrant and energised workplace with a strong inclusive culture remains as fundamental as ever.

I’m also committed to providing the CER team with the tools they need, through process and systems developments that further enhance our flexibility to respond to changes in scheme, policy and business environments.

With the countdown to 2030 now very much on, and with recognition of the extensive work required beyond 2030 to reach our mid-century net zero goal, this corporate plan is a key plank in supporting our purpose of accelerating carbon abatement in Australia by delivering effective administration of the schemes that will do some of the heavy lifting to get us to those goals.

Mr David Parker AM
Chair, Clean Energy Regulator
29 August 2023

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