2023 Budget: Accelerating Renewable Energy and the Net Zero Transition - 100% Renewables

2023 Budget: Accelerating Renewable Energy and the Net Zero Transition

The Labor Government’s May-2023 budget is a positive step in the right direction for Australia’s efforts to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and scale up our renewable energy capacity to transform our electricity grid and support the development of green hydrogen. ‘Efficiency and electrification with renewables’ is our key takeaway from the announced measures. In addition to headline initiatives like Hydrogen Headstart and the Capacity Investment Scheme, the budget builds on the recently released National Electric Vehicle Strategy with further funding to enable the EV transition, provides significant incentives for households and small business to invest in energy efficiency and electrification upgrades, and provides added funding to strengthen energy efficiency standards and associated rating schemes. Improved governance of carbon credit schemes and greenwashing by business are also welcome initiatives, as are commitments to support clean energy sector apprenticeships and future skills needs.

100% Renewables has summarised many of the announced funding and enabling measures below. We will track progress of each announcement and update our clients on opportunities they can access to support their net zero journey.

InitiativeTargeted at…Funding CommitmentWhat the funding will support
Renewable Hydrogen (Hydrogen Headstart)Industry & Energy$2 billion ($156 million over next 4 years)Production incentives for renewable hydrogen to leverage private investment and help two or three large renewable hydrogen projects bridge the gap to commercial viability
Guarantee of OriginIndustry & Energy$38.2 millionScheme to certify renewable energy and green hydrogen production
Capacity Investment SchemeEnergy$12 billionTo help unlock over $10 billion of investment in firmed renewable energy projects in the NEM, including for Renewable Energy Zones, offshore wind and crucial transmission infrastructure
Powering the Regions FundIndustry$1.9 billionAssisting trade-exposed safeguard facilities, energy-intensive minerals processing, regional industrial facilities and new clean energy industries through the Powering the Regions Fund, including the Safeguard Transformation Stream, Critical Inputs to Clean Energy Industries stream, and the Industrial Transformation Stream (administered by ARENA)
Powering Australia Industry Growth CentreIndustry$14.8 millionEstablish the Powering Australia Industry Growth Centre, which will support Australian businesses looking to manufacture, commercialise and adopt renewable energy technologies
Energy Price Relief PlanHouseholds and small businessUp to $3 billionFederal, state and territory governments partnership to deliver up to $3 billion of electricity bill relief for eligible households (up to $500) and small businesses (up to $650)
CEFC Green Finance (Energy Savings Plan)Households$1 billionHousehold energy upgrades fund to provide green finance for 110,000 residential home electrification and energy upgrades like double glazing, solar panels, including provision for landlords to support rental housing
Social Housing (Energy Savings Plan)Households$300 million + $600 million co-funding from StatesUpgrade 60,000 social housing properties to save up to one third of their energy costs
Small Business Energy Incentive (Energy Savings Plan)Small business$310 million20% tax deductions for businesses that invest in renewable energy, batteries and energy efficiency. Up to $100,000 will be eligible, with the maximum bonus tax deduction per business of $20,000
EV - Transport and Infrastructure Net Zero Roadmap and Action PlanTransport$7.8 million over four years (of $20.9 million total package)Development of the Transport and Infrastructure Net Zero Roadmap and Action Plan
Fuel Efficiency StandardsTransport$7.4 million over four yearsDevelopment of Fuel Efficiency Standards (annual tailpipe CO2 caps on car brands)
EV – charging infrastructureTransport$5.2 million over four yearsDevelopment of a national charging infrastructure mapping tool
EV – charging infrastructureTransportPart of the $20.9 million total package)Research on retrofitting multi-residential buildings with EV charging
Sovereign Green Bond FundSustainable FinanceMechanism to allow super funds and banks to finance public projects aimed at getting Australia to net zero
Clean building Managed Investment TrustCommercial BuildingsFrom 1 July 2025Extend the clean building MIT withholding tax concession to eligible data centres and warehouses. Buildings will need to satisfy higher energy efficiency standards to qualify for the concession
Greenwashing by businessAll sectors$4.3 millionAdded surveillance and enforcement powers for ASIC to crack down on greenwashing by businesses
Energy Apprenticeships programAll sectors$100 million10,000 new clean energy sector apprenticeships and a Clean Energy Capacity Study to explore future workforce needs and opportunities
Efficiency standardsAll sectors$36.7 million over four yearsUpdating the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards (GEMS) program and Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS)
Net Zero AuthorityAll sectors$23 million initial fundingManaging the energy transition and ensuring the workers, industries and communities are supported and to help investors and companies to engage with net zero transformation opportunities
Clean Energy Superpower MasterplanAll sectors$5.6 millionDCCEEW to conduct rapid analysis and action to ensure Australia's clean energy competitiveness, including securing supply chains, building the highly skilled workforce required and realising our competitive advantages in critical minerals and green manufacturing
National Climate Risk Assessment and a National Adaptation PlanAll sectors$28 million over two yearsDevelopment of the National Climate Risk Assessment and National Adaptation Plan
Future Gas StrategyAll sectors$6.7 millionThe Strategy will support Australia's energy system to reach 82 per cent renewables by 2030
Independent Review of Carbon CreditsAll sectors$18.1 millionReforms and auditing arising from the independent review
Australia’s National Greenhouse AccountsAll sectors$21.8 million over three yearsTo improve the NGA’s capability to publish better emissions data and track progress against emissions reduction targets

While these measures are welcome and will help to reduce Australia’s emissions, there remains much to be done. As some industry stakeholders have already noted, if the 116 new fossil fuel projects on the Government’s Resource & Energy Major Project list were to proceed, the gains being made with renewables, efficiency and electrification may be to no avail in the context of trying to limit global heating to 1.5°C. A Future Gas Strategy that addresses key barriers and sets out a pathway for a shift away from gas would be a welcome step. Faster progress to electrification and efficiency with renewables in future budgets will also be needed to meet our near term and long term goals.

If you have any questions about how your organisation might benefit from the new budget initiatives, please do not hesitate to get in touch.



If you need help developing a net zero strategy, contact us today to learn how we can support your transition. Reach out to  Barbara or Patrick for more information.

Feel free to use an excerpt of this blog on your own site, newsletter, blog, etc. Just send us a copy or link and include the following text at the end of the excerpt: “This content is reprinted from 100% Renewables Pty Ltd’s blog.

Related Articles

Subscribe To Our
Net Zero Newsletter

Get monthly cutting edge energy, carbon and net-zero insights delivered to your inbox for free

Thousands of your peers are already reading it.

Just one more step...

Please enter your name & email to download for free