The Federal Government's proposed Renewable Energy Target Scheme will cost Australian hospitals and aged care around $10 million a year, Catholic Health Australia (CHA) revealed today.
In the first industry costing of the proposed scheme to be released, CHA found the impact on not-for-profit Catholic hospitals -10 per cent of all Australian hospitals - would grow from an annual bill of $650,000 in 2010 to $1.7m in 2020.
"Our calculations show the scheme will cost Catholic health and aged care providers $1.02m next year, rising to $2.7m in 2020," said CHA CEO Martin Laverty.
"This comes on top of the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme, under which energy costs for Catholic hospitals are likely to increase by $10.8 million in the first year the scheme is fully operational.
"Australia cannot afford to impose such a heavy financial penalty on our health sector - Commonwealth funding for hospital and aged care services must be adjusted to meet the costs of the proposed schemes."
CHA supports the Government's intention to set and pursue renewable energy targets and to reduce carbon pollution, Mr Laverty said.
"We fully support initiatives to improve the environmental sustainability and reduce the carbon footprint of hospitals and aged care - in fact many of our services are already doing terrific work in this area," he said.
"But these schemes should not impact on the sector's ability to provide quality health and aged care to all Australians who need it."