The ground has been set

We live in a world of the instant: constant email, fast-paced news, instant gratification, and demands met immediately.

However, when it comes to the complex world of energy security, pricing and emissions, it’s important to take the time to analyse the issues thoroughly.

Last Friday the Government released its long-awaited Finkel Review on energy.

For an industry experiencing major increases in wholesale electricity prices, this is a vital review for our sector.  And it certainly is a credible and substantive analysis.

As I mentioned in last week's Property Australia, we identified five things to look out for in the Finkel Review – and this is an initial analysis of those tests: 

First, the Review has been met positively by most parts of the energy sector, suggesting that it does set an investment framework to provide the increased generation capacity the economy will need into the future.

Second, these recommendations can align with the Government's medium to long term emissions reduction objectives.

Third, the blueprint recognises the vital role electricity prices play in our national competitiveness. However, the real test is will these changes take pressure off power prices?

Fourth, Finkel recommends the accelerated roll out of broader energy efficiency measures to complement other reforms in the report. While welcome, he does not analyse this in any depth. Energy efficiency is an area of great opportunity and it complements the framework set out in the Review.

Finally, it appears the Finkel Review has created a real opportunity for a bi-partisan alignment of energy policy – which has been sorely lacking for too long.

There is still a long way to go on this issue. Nevertheless, the ground has been set for a debate that is rational, considered and that should align our short-term policy with a long-term policy challenge.

That can only be a good thing.