Access to secure, reliable and competitively priced energy underpins almost every facet of life in Australia’s modern economy.
The efficient generation and supply of energy is integral to business and trade and for creating goods, services and jobs. It underpins our high standard of living as well as our world-class health and education systems and the services we depend on for our daily activities. Without it, our society simply cannot function. Society also requires sustainable patterns of energy production, supply and consumption.
Energy is also a commodity that is transformed and traded. Energy-intensive industries have prospered in Australia and make a substantial contribution to the economy and society, particularly in regional Australia. Though sometimes challenging to develop, new and emerging energy sources have the potential to add to our national wealth.
Realising the transformation to a clean energy economy is a long-term undertaking. Under the Australian Government’s Clean Energy Future Plan, the efficient pricing of greenhouse gas emissions is now a legislated reality for Australia’s energy sector and economy more broadly. Combined with well-functioning energy markets and targeted support for the development of new clean energy technologies, this will drive long-term change in our energy system, creating opportunities for new industries, technologies and jobs.
Australia’s economy is increasingly integrated into global markets. We are now a leading supplier of energy to citizens in many countries throughout our region, and there is significant potential for further growth. Our global engagement is critical not just for export opportunities but for our ability to finance development and for making the most of new technologies and expertise.
Continued reform to our energy markets and networks will ensure that they are well regulated and meet our energy needs efficiently with a secure and dependable supply. Providing Australians with options to respond to increasing energy costs is vital, particularly for the less advantaged.
Managing our energy choices efficiently and sustainably will bring enormous social and economic benefits. Undeniably, it will also present challenges. The key purpose of energy policy is to manage those challenges and, in doing so, to improve the wellbeing of Australia and its citizens.