A bill envisaging additional funding for renewable energy, aimed at ensuring that all electricity consumption in Austria is covered from renewables by 2030 and making the country climate neutral by 2040, has passed the lower house of the parliament.
The Renewable Expansion Law and accompanying legal provisions envisage EUR 1 billion a year in government funding for the green energy transition in Austria, with an additional EUR 30 billion in investment expected from the private sector, according to reports.
The bill envisages EUR 1 billion a year in government funding for the energy transition
A further EUR 500 million in government funds is to be invested in hydrogen and green gas with the aim of speeding up the decarbonization of industry.
In addition, the legal basis for local energy communities of private households and small businesses has been created, according to the Austrian parliament’s website.
The new funding has yet to be approved by the parliament’s upper house
The new funding regime for green electricity has yet to be approved by the parliament’s upper house, and, in some cases, by the European Commission.
NGOs and industry have welcomed the bill
The bill was welcomed by Austrian NGOs as the beginning of the phaseout of fossil fuels and an important step towards climate neutrality in 2040, as well as by the chamber of commerce, which called it a “huge investment and innovation plan,” according to EurActiv.
The government plans to spend EUR 17 million on training people for green jobs
The Austrian government also plans to invest EUR 17 million, starting in 2022, to train unemployed people for about 1,000 green jobs in an effort to tackle the shortage of skilled workers in this field.
Environment Minister Leonore Gewessler has said that fitters for photovoltaic systems are urgently needed, according to a report by the Wiener Zeitung.