Polling released today shows rogue Liberals who are targeting wind energy and the Renewable Energy target are out-of-touch with the community’s views on renewable energy.
New polling by Essential Research shows 73 percent of Australians support the Renewable Energy Target. A substantial 40 percent of which think the Renewable Energy Target is not high enough.
Wind energy remains popular with Australians despite an aggressive anti-wind energy scare campaign. A massive 76 percent support building more wind farms.
Poll after poll shows the community supports the Renewables Energy Target and wind energy. Lowering the RET and stalling the national wind energy sector would be a highly unpopular move.
The strong level of support for the Renewable Energy Target and wind energy is not surprising. The RET and wind farms have driven investment and created jobs in regional Australia. The Macarthur and Oaklands wind farms, for instance, pumped $67 million into the southwest Victorian economy, employed around 900 people during construction, and will provide 52 ongoing jobs.
Several Liberal backbenchers will join anti-wind farm crusaders Senators John Madigan (DLP) and Nick Xenophon at an anti-renewables rally at Parliament House, Canberra on June 18. The event is organised by the clandestine wind farm hate site, Stop These Things.
The views of Liberal politicians scheduled to speak–Alby Schultz, Craig Kelly and Chris Back–are contradictory to those held by senior shadow ministers Greg Hunt and Ian Macfarlane. They are also contrary to the views of Coalition voters. Some 64 percent of which believe the RET is either ‘not high enough’ or ‘about right,’ and 71 percent support more wind energy.
This scare campaign has real implications. Politicians who buy into the misinformation spruiked by anti-wind farm campaigners are putting jobs, investment and all the other benefits of wind energy at risk. Uncertainty surrounding the RET has already cost jobs in the wind energy sector. The Portland-based wind-turbine tower manufacturer Keppel Prince has laid off 45 wind workers.
If the Liberal Party intends to continue to support the RET and development of wind energy after the September election, then the leadership of the party must come out and distance themselves from those MPs who are joining the ‘wind farm fraud’ rally in Canberra.