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Australia’s renewable body to provide A$2m for emissions reduction in heavy industry

Out-Law News | 17 Aug 2021 | 12:52 am | 1 min. read

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will provide A$2 million ($1.5m) in grant funding to help heavy industry reduce emissions.

ClimateWorks Australia, a not-for-profit organisation that seeks to connect research and climate action, received the fund which will help with the next step of the Australian Industry Energy Transitions Initiative (ETI).

It has been reported that APA Group, Australian Gas Infrastructure Group, BHP, BlueScope, BP Australia, Fortescue, Orica, Rio Tinto, Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy & Fertilisers and Woodside have joined the plan. Those companies collectively account for 21% of Australian industrial emissions.

Another group will join the plan as research providers including Aurecon, AustralianSuper, CBUS, HSBC, NAB, Schneider and BloombergNE.

Energy expert George Varma of Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law, said: “Decarbonising heavy industry will greatly assist governments and the private sector to achieve net zero carbon emission targets. Decarbonising energy systems and transportation should be a primary focus and providing financial assistance to develop these solutions will expedite the transition. This ARENA funding is a testament to the commitment and desire to tackle climate change. This initiative is a fantastic example of collaboration in the private sector to drive innovation to transition to a cleaner energy future. This is what it will take to truly effect change.”

In 2020 ARENA provided A$300,000 for establishing the ETI which is focusing on five supply chains across heavy industry including iron and steel, alumina and aluminum, other metals including lithium, copper and nickel, liquified natural gas and chemicals including plastics, fertilisers and explosives.

In June, the ARENA provided A$25m ($19m) grant funding in the first round of the Industrial Energy Transformation Studies Programme to support feasibility and engineering studies for replicable energy efficiency and decarbonisation projects.