A new advertisement set to run throughout regional-Queensland and -Victoria, as well as on the country’s news station Sky News, prompts viewers to withhold their vote in the upcoming state-elections from parties willing to cut the country’s Renewable Energy Target.
Created by the Australian Solar Council, the ad launched on Tuesday and features a young mum looking to purchase solar for her home so she can cut her power bill “by 65%”.
“Voters going to the polls in Victoria and Queensland should be aware where the parties stand on support for solar,” said John Grimes, Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Council. “Governments should be making it easier, not harder, for families to drastically cut their power bills.
“By abolishing or cutting the Renewable Energy Target, the Government will be locking millions of Australian families into every spiralling power bills.”
The Australian RET has been the hot topic across the country over the past few months, and I’ve had a lot to say on the matter over that time. Unsurprisingly, the renewable energy industry has been launching their own campaigns to combat Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s attempts to abolish the RET — this ad campaign is simply the latest and biggest.
The ad ends by prompting voters to cast their ballot towards those parties willing to “Save Solar”, and support pretty much anyone other than the Liberal/National coalition.
However, the facts of the ad are missing, which is only going to fuel opposition. While it is entirely likely that in some manner the young mum in the ad might be able to save 65% on her electricity bill, neither the advertisement nor the accompanying press release from the Australian Solar Council mentions just where that 65% saving is coming from, and whether the data it is based on is at all legitimate.
I don’t intend to minimize the importance of this advertisement campaign, however in a world where numbers and ‘facts’ like “the Renewable Energy Target pushes up the cost of electricity for everyday Australians” (the Coalition’s message) and “the Renewable Energy Target reduces the cost of electricity for everyday Australians” (everyone else’s message), backing up your statements with evidence is more important than ever.