2012/1 NSW Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme

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Legacy report

18 September 2013

The Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme (GGAS) closed on 30 June 2012. This followed the NSW Government's decision to close GGAS upon the commencement of the Commonwealth’s carbon tax on 1 July 2012. In the announcement the Government stated that the decision to close GGAS was to remove duplication and to minimise costs to NSW consumers. The national carbon pricing mechanism commenced on 1 July 2012 as part of the Commonwealth's Clean Energy Futures package.

We have released a Legacy Report on GGAS titled “NSW Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme, Strengths, Weaknesses and Lessons Learned”.  The report discusses the scheme’s design parameters, its costs, what contributed to its success and the high levels of compliance achieved.  It also discusses areas where improvements could have been made to deliver better environmental outcomes.  The report includes testimonials from a range of stakeholders, commentators and participant on their experience with and perspective on the scheme.

GGAS commenced on 1 January 2003 and was the first mandatory greenhouse gas trading scheme in the world. The Scheme imposed obligations on all NSW electricity retailers and certain other parties - including large electricity users who elected to manage their own benchmark - to abate a portion of the greenhouse gas emissions attributable to their sales/consumption of electricity in NSW.  They did this by purchasing and acquitting NSW Greenhouse Abatement Certificates (also known as NGACs) created by accredited Abatement Certificate Providers (ACPs) who undertook activities that:

  • reduced emissions from existing generators
  • generated electricity using low emission technologies
  • improved energy efficiency
  • sequestered carbon in forests
  • reduced emissions from industrial processes in large energy consuming industries.

The level of compliance by both Benchmark Participants and ACPs during the life of GGAS was very high. Over 144 million abatement certificates (NGACs and LUACs) were created, representing a similar number of tCO2e of greenhouse gas abatement achieved. A full account of the performance of GGAS is available in the Annual Compliance and Operation Reports available from the list below.

Historical details of the Scheme are available from the scheme website at www.greenhousegas.nsw.gov.au

Details of certificates registered in GGAS are available at https://www.ggas-registry.nsw.gov.au

NSW Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme - Strengths weaknesses and lessons learned577.21KB PDF FileIPART has released a Legacy Report on the NSW Greenhouse Gas Reduction Scheme (GGAS) titled NSW Greenhouse Reduction Scheme – Strengths, Weaknesses and Lessons Learned.