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NSW government to help big business

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The NSW government has committed to working with four of the state’s highest emitting manufacturers to cut their emissions and comply with new national laws forcing them to meet the federal government’s upgraded climate target.

Following Thursday’s announcement, studies will be commissioned into how metal manufacturer Tomago Aluminium, cement producer Boral, chemical manufacturer Oric and starch manufacturer Manildra Group can meet their safeguard obligations at minimum cost as well as how they can further reduce their emissions.

NSW Treasurer Matt Kean has announced the government will partner with some of the state’s highest emitters to lower emissions.Credit:Nick Moir

“We are working with industry to transform NSW into an innovative, thriving low carbon economy. Accelerating the deployment of deep decarbonisation technology will help industry prosper in a net zero economy and open up new markets for NSW-made products,” NSW Treasurer and Energy Minister Matt Kean said.

“The studies focus on how we can adopt cutting edge clean technology right here in NSW like green hydrogen in cement manufacturing or renewable energy in aluminium smelting.

“These facilities combined emit more than 10 million tonnes of carbon every year, equivalent to the emissions of more than 3.5 million cars. Helping them slash emissions is critical to the success of reaching our targets of 70 per cent emissions reduction by 2035 and net zero by 2050.”

The NSW initiative is the nation’s first state investment to help industry comply with the new national climate target. Under the Commonwealth’s proposed changes to the safeguard mechanism, companies will be obliged to reduce their emissions by 4.9 per cent every year to 2030. Among those companies are the four involved in Thursday’s state announcement.


The safeguard mechanism is one of the federal government’s key policies to help achieve its emissions reduction targets, with the aim of lowering industrial emissions. It will impose pollution limits on Australia’s 215 biggest carbon emitters, and those limits will be lowered through the years to achieve greater reductions.

The companies captured by the mechanism would have to cut their pollution by investing in clean technology – such as replacing gas inputs with renewable energy – or capturing their emissions.

If they don’t, or if their emissions still exceed their limit, they will be forced to buy carbon offset credits equivalent to the volume of carbon emissions that exceeded their cap.

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