Minister's foreword




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STAKEHOLDER CONSULTATION



You can provide feedback on this discussion paper in two ways:

  1. Through attendance at a series of targeted consultations on the program around Australia in September/October 2011. Interested persons and organisations are encouraged to provide the Department with contact details; and/or

  2. Send written comments on the questions in this Discussion Paper or on any other aspects of the program to:

Manager - Clean Technology Programs, AusIndustry

GPO Box 9839

CANBERRA ACT 2601

or: CleanTechnologyPro@innovation.gov.au

or: Fax: (02) 6290 8793


Comments are due by close of business 21 October 2011. Submissions will be kept private and confidential.


Information on Clean Energy Future is available on www.cleanenergyfuture.gov.au and factsheets on the Clean Technology programs are available on the AusIndustry website at www.ausindustry.gov.au.

CLEAN ENERGY FUTURE



On 10 July 2011, the Prime Minister, the Hon Julia Gillard MP, announced the Clean Energy Future plan to assist industry to manage the impact of a carbon price. By helping business, the Australian Government will support jobs, maintain economic competitiveness and ensure the environmental effectiveness of a carbon price.


The Department, with support from Innovation Australia, is responsible for implementing the following Clean Technology grant programs:


Investment (scheduled to commence early 2012) - The Government has committed $1 billion for transitional adjustment assistance to manufacturing businesses, which is split into:

  • Clean Technology Investment Program - $800 million over seven years (initially excluding food and beverage processing and metal forging industry sectors).

  • Clean Technology Food and Foundries Investment Program - $200 million over six years for the food and beverage processing and metal foundries and forging industry sectors.

Innovation (scheduled to commence early 2012)

  • Clean Technology Innovation Program - $200 million over five years to support the research, development and commercialisation of clean technology products, processes and services.

CHAPTER 1: INVESTMENT PROGRAMS




CLEAN TECHNOLOGY INVESTMENT PROGRAM



The $800 million Clean Technology Investment Program will operate over seven years from 2011 12 to 2017 18. It is a competitive, merit-based, grants program. The program will provide grants from a minimum of $25,000 and will contribute on average one dollar for every three dollars contributed by grantees (e.g. Government contribution of up to 25 per cent of total eligible project expenditure).


The objective of the program is to enhance the competitiveness and adaptation to climate change of Australia’s manufacturing industry by reducing the energy or carbon intensity of firms’ manufacturing processes, facilities and/or products. It is expected to be transitional support.


The program will provide grants to existing manufacturers to invest in energy efficient capital equipment, low pollution technologies, processes and products. Applicants will be required to demonstrate that the investment is beyond routine maintenance or replacement of capital items.


QUESTIONS

  1. It is conceivable that there may be applications for very large projects of value in excess of $400 million. Should there be a maximum total of funding provided to any one business under this program? If so, what amount? Please provide justification.

  2. It was announced that there would be an average of 3:1 funding contribution for the program which implies that some grant rates could be higher and some lower. What mechanisms can be used to achieve this average?



WHO IS ELIGIBLE?



To be eligible to apply for a grant under the Clean Technology Investment Program:

  • the applicant must be an incorporated business in Australia1, which undertakes manufacturing activities in Australia. For the purposes of this program, manufacturing is defined as the physical or chemical transformation of materials or components into new products or services2;

  • the applicant must consume the equivalent of at least 300 megawatt hours of electricity or 5 tera joules of natural gas (or an equivalent mix of fuels) through its total manufacturing operations in Australia in the 12 month period preceding an application or be directly liable under the carbon pricing mechanism;

  • applicants will be required to provide evidence to support claimed threshold amount e.g. gas supplier or electricity bills.

  • the applicant must be able to show it can fund its share of project costs.


Applicants who are eligible to make an application under the Steel Transformation Plan are not eligible to apply for the Clean Technology Investment Program. Applicants who are eligible to make an application under the Clean Technology Food and Foundries Investment Program are also not eligible to apply unless that program’s funding is fully allocated.


QUESTIONS

  1. Are there any gaps in the above definition of a manufacturing business that should be included as well?

  2. Are there any energy sources, other than electricity and gas, which could be considered for threshold consumption?

  3. Should the energy consumption threshold include distribution activities? Please provide justification.

  4. Are applicants with a mixed business model able to report on energy consumption associated only with manufacturing activities?

  5. What evidence of energy consumption can be provided by applicants who generate their own energy?

  6. What type of supply chain and other collaborative activities should be eligible for funding? Please provide examples and justification.


If you are interested in further information on the Clean Technology Investment Program, refer to “Common Investment Program Elements” below.

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