Australia ends ban on wind energy investment

Australia ends ban on wind energy investment

SYDNEY - Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has ended the controversial ban on government investment in wind energy, the Sun-Herald newspaper reported Sunday.

The ban was imposed by Turnbull's predecessor, Tony Abbott, who was openly hostile to renewable energy, in particular wind turbines, which he described as "visually awful." Instead Abbott advocated coal use, which he said was "good for humanity."

It is the first move by Turnbull to reverse Abbott's anti-renewable energy policies since he took over as prime minister three months ago.

It comes as the world's nations reached agreement in Paris on reducing carbon emissions.

In June Abbott imposed a ban on the government's Clean Energy Finance Corporation investing in wind energy.

The corporation has 10 billion Australian dollars (7.2 billion US dollars) available to invest in renewable energy projects. It has already slated 67 million dollars to build Australia's third largest wind farm at Ararat in Victoria.

Abbott twice tried to abolish the corporation, which was set up by the previous Labor government, but was blocked by the Senate where independents and minor parties hold the balance of power.

The corporation has so far invested 1.3 billion dollars in renewable energy projects. 

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