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How Does the Clean Energy Regulator Work?

The Australian Government’s Clean Energy Regulator is an independent FMA Agency that administers and enforces the Carbon Pricing Mechanism, the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting System, the Renewable Energy Target and the Carbon Farming Initiative.

On the 1 January 2011 the Renewable Energy Target was split into two parts – the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET) and the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES). The schemes are underpinned by the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 (the Act)Renewable Energy (Electricity) (Charge) Act 2000 and the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Regulations 2001.

The Administration and Progression of the Renewable Energy Target

As a central player in the Renewable Energy Target (RET) Scheme, the Clean Energy Regulator:

  • maintains several registers, which include the register of:
    • registered persons
    • accredited power stations
    • small-scale technology certificates (STCs)
    • large-scale generation certificates (LGCs)
    • applications for accredited power stations.
  • accredits eligible renewable energy power stations
  • registers LGCs for accredited renewable energy power stations
  • registers STCs for solar water heater, heat pump and small-scale solar panel, wind and hydro electricity installations
  • manages and maintains the online REC Registry and the STC Clearing House
  • monitors compliance with the Act
  • communicates the Act and Regulations
  • updates and maintains the Register of Solar Water Heaters
  • manages inspections of small-scale solar panels, wind and hydro installations for which certificates have been created
  • manages the partial exemption process for emissions-intensive trade-exposed industries.

For further information regarding the Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator’s role in administering the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET) and the Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES), visit About the Schemes.

History of the Renewable Energy Target

The Office of the Renewable Energy Regulator (ORER) was established to administer the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 on 12 February 2001, with the appointment of Mr David Rossiter as the first Renewable Energy Regulator by the then Minister for the Environment and Heritage. The Minister for Climate Change and Water appointed Mr Amarjot Singh as the acting Renewable Energy Regulator from 1 July 2008 to 31 May 2009. The Minister for Climate Change and Water appointed Mr Andrew Livingston as the Renewable Energy Regulator on 1 June 2009. ORER became part of the Clean Energy Regulator on 2 April 2012.  From this date, Mr Andrew Livingston oversees the Renewable Energy Target and Carbon Farming Initiative Division of the Clean Energy Regulator.

RET policy questions

The Renewables and Reporting Branch of the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency (DCCEE) handles all policy issues relating to the Act and Regulations. Email: ret@climatechange.gov.au

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