Submission to the Tasmanian Government on the Draft Renewable Energy Coordination Framework

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Summary of Recommendations

  • An auction process for Tasmania could be valuable to coordinate development geographically and over time, set standards for the best community outcomes and enable coordination of community benefits.
  • Tasmania should adopt best practices in terms of biodiversity protection.
    The Government should consider aligning community benefit programs with existing social policies, such as those identified in Council strategic plans.
  • RE-Alliance supports the need for a review of the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 to determine whether projects such as large scale solar farms, transmission lines, pumped hydro and hydrogen should be listed as activities requiring EPA Tasmania assessment.
  • RE-Alliance supports the establishment of a coordinator role. The role’s mandate should be clearly specified.
    REZ planning should prioritise social licence by stipulating best practice community engagement and delivering effective benefit sharing mechanisms.
  • Re-Alliance would support further investigation by jurisdictions on how benefit-sharing programs for transmission projects can be managed given the current focus on economic efficiency within the Regulatory Investment Test for Transmission (RIT-T) based on the NEO.
    RE-Alliance recommends that the Government provides legal and technical support for the coordinated community benefit fund in each REZ.
  • RE-Alliance recommends that the Government provide legal and technical support for renewable community co-ownership, co-investment and community ownership.
  • RE-Alliance recommends that the Government provide support for a collaborative approach between scheme providers by creating a social licence working group in Government tasked with investigating opportunities in planning, construction, and operational phases.
  • RE-Alliance recommends that Traditional Owners are recognised as key stakeholders to be consulted during the development and benefit sharing process.
  • RE-Alliance recommends that the Tasmanian Government draws on the experience and resources created by other jurisdictions to create a Community Engagement and Benefit Sharing Guide outlining best practice for the Tasmanian context, referring to other relevant frameworks as necessary.
  • RE-Alliance recommends that the Tasmanian Government establish the role of community educator to help communicate and articulate why the REZ is important for social, environmental and economic reasons. This function could be incorporated in the Renewable Energy Coordinator role.