National Net Zero Authority facilitating Australia's transition towards sustainable energy

On May 5th, 2023, the Climate Change and Energy Minister Chris Bowen from the Albanese Government published a media release on a national Net Zero Authority, which presents further ESG opportunities especially those in Regional Australia.

The Authority will serve as a guiding force to facilitate Australia's transition towards sustainable energy, ensuring a streamlined and equitable execution while empowering key regions, industries, employers, and stakeholders to harness Australia's potential as a leading force in the renewable energy sector.

The Authority encapsulates the government’s promotion of a positive economic transformation across Australian industries, communities and workforce, aligning with the global commitment of achieving net zero emissions by 2050. The Government outlined that their aim is for no one to be left behind amidst the ESG global transition.

In order to expedite the government's action on the Authority's pledges, they have proposed to the Governor-General the establishment of an Executive Agency, with the aim of enacting legislation starting from July 1st of this year.

According to the media release, the new legislated Net Zero Authority has three centralised objectives:

  1. “Support workers in emissions-intensive sectors to access new employment, skills and support as the net zero transformation continues;
  2. Coordinate programs and policies across government to support regions and communities to attract and take advantage of new clean energy industries and set those industries up for success; and
  3. Help investors and companies to engage with net zero transformation opportunities.”

In addition, the Government also said they’re allocating funding of $400 million from the $1.9 billion ‘Powering the Regions Fund’ to support existing and new industries initiate decarbonisation strategies in the regions.

The establishment of this Authority focuses on addressing critical aspects such as investment, job creation, and access to decarbonisation strategies, all vital for businesses in the regions that require this support. Targeted regions include the NSW Hunter Valley, Victoria's Latrobe Valley, Central Queensland, and Collie in WA, which are home to mines and coal-fired generators.

Support has already been shown from Victoria’s Latrobe Valley, with community representative Wendy Farmer saying that the authority will “have a bigger picture of actually looking across the whole of Australia and identifying the needs but also then be able to guide businesses in particular regions that have the expertise” (Bryce, 2023).

The Climate Council has also shown their endorsement, saying the authority is “long overdue” and “is a vital piece of the puzzle as we shift towards a cleaner, more prosperous economic future for all Australians” (Aubrey, 2023).

How we can help

At Mazars, we stand at the forefront of the evolving ESG landscape, equipped with both a deep expertise and robust global professional network. Our strength lies in harnessing these assets to empower businesses, especially in the regions, in realising their potential and successfully navigating their journey towards Net Zero emissions. To be effective the ESG strategy must sit at the heart of an organisation and be fully integrated into the business model.

We have the expertise to assist you to connect the dots and design an ESG based strategy that is tailormade for your organisation while at the same time ensuring compliance to increased levels of regulation. From helping you getting started in your ESG journey with our Mazars ESG navigator to equal pay certification and robust financial modelling to analyse the impacts of environmental projects, we have a broad range of services to offer. We can source alternative capital solutions to safeguard operational working capital while aligning with green finance initiatives.

We are also adept at servicing investors eager to finance viable agricultural investments that generate a carbon and/or biodiversity offset income stream. With us, the journey towards net zero carbon emissions is not just possible but strategically planned and professionally executed and is only going to become expedited thanks to the National Net Zero Authority. Read more on our services within sustainability here.

If you require assistance with your sustainability strategy or would like to know more about our service offering in this area, please contact your usual Mazars advisor, or alternatively one of our specialists via the form below or on:

Brisbane – Owen Dingle

Melbourne  - Damien Lambert

Sydney – Jim Mascitelli

+61 7 3218 3900

+61 3 9252 0800

+61 9922 1166

Author: Marcus Cutuli

Published: 25/05/2023

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References

  1. J.Aubrey. (2023, May 5). Net Zero Authority gives more Australians a chance to prosper from renewables. Retrieved May 9, 2023, from https://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/news/net-zero-authority-gives-more-australians-a-chance-to-prosper-from-renewables
  2. K.Ford. (2023, May 5). Federal government to establish Net Zero Authority, pledges $400m. Retrieved May 9, 2023, from https://www.investordaily.com.au/markets/53284-federal-government-to-establish-net-zero-authority-pledges-400m 
  3. B.Bryce. (2023, May 5). Chris Bowen announces Net Zero Authority transition funding. Retrieved May 9, 2023, from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2023-05-05/chris-bowen-announces-net-zero-authority-transition-funding/102306990 
  4. The Conversation. (2023, May 5). Australia finally has a Net Zero Authority: here's what should top its agenda. Retrieved May 9, 2023, from https://theconversation.com/australia-finally-has-a-net-zero-authority-heres-what-should-top-its-agenda-205029 
  5. C.Bowen. (2023, May 5). National Net Zero Authority. Retrieved May 9, 2023, from https://www.pm.gov.au/media/national-net-zero-authority
  6. Harris.A. (2022). Sustainability. Retrieved May 23, 2023 from https://www.mazars.com.au/Home/Services/Sustainability