AGL Australia

InfluenceMap Score
C
Performance Band
65%
Organisation Score
64%
Relationship Score
Modifications to InfluenceMap Scoring
Sector:
Utilities
Head​quarters:
Sydney, Australia
Official Web Site:
Wikipedia:

Climate Lobbying Overview: AGL Australia appears to be broadly supporting progressive climate policy at state and federal level in Australia, and shows active engagement in this area. However, AGL Australia has shown mixed support for specific policy measures to facilitate the energy transition and its position on the long-term role for fossil fuels in the energy mix appears to not be aligned with IPCC guidelines. In June 2021, AGL Energy has announced a demerger into AGL Australia, its renewable/gas business, and Accel Energy, which will take over its coal assets. When talking about the parent company, AGL Australia, InfluenceMap will use AGL.

Top-line Messaging on Climate Policy: AGL Australia’s top-line messaging on climate policy appears to be broadly supportive of ambitious climate action in Australia. In July 2021, the company declared support for Victoria’s state target to reach net zero emissions by 2050, and in May 2020 it accepted that a mixture of government regulations and market-based policies are needed to achieve this. The organization stated in its 2021 Annual report, published in August 2021, that it would work with policymakers to establish effective frameworks to accelerate the energy transition, however appeared to highlight significant exceptions for affordability and economic interests. The company has also reiterated its support for the objectives of the Paris Agreement as recently as August 2020.

Engagement with Climate-Related Regulations: AGL Australia appears to show mostly positive support for specific policies to respond to climate change, with some notable exceptions. For example, in the first half of 2020, the company appeared to strongly support state-based energy efficiency targets and schemes in Australia, such as those in New South Wales and Victoria. This follows an AGL submission from July 2018 where it advocated for federal policymakers to introduce vehicle efficiency standards. In April 2018, AGL also supported emissions trading, with the caveat that it should not delay the decarbonization of the Australian economy. In May 2020, AGL expressed support for the Emissions Reduction Fund and supported broadening it to facilitate emissions reductions in other sectors.

However, AGL in September 2018 supported reforms to the Safeguard Mechanism that weakened the ambition of the policy, by allowing annually updated baselines that allowed facilities to emit more whilst remaining under the emissions cap. In the same submission, AGL appeared to oppose extending the requirements of the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting legislation to include Scope 3 emissions.

Positioning on Energy Transition: Although AGL Australia has expressed top-line support for the transition of the energy mix on its corporate website, it has shown mixed support for specific policy measures intended to aid this transition. For example, in November 2020, the company appeared to oppose the Energy Infrastructure Investment Plan in New South Wales, a major reform plan intended to accelerate the transition to clean energy, with CEO Brett Redman claiming the bill had delayed construction of new energy infrastructure in the state. AGL Australia responded to the 2021 Gas Fired Recovery Plan Consultation, stating that it was desirable for fossil gas to have a greater role in the energy mix as a transitionary fuel, which may not be fully aligned with IPCC guidance. In a June 2021 consultation response, AGL Australia did not support for the maintenance of thermal coal supply and investment in Australia's energy mix through a physical Retailer Reliability Obligation (RRO), a mechanism that would effectively subsidize ageing gas and coal plants over concerns of reliability and affordability, but maintained a similar capacity mechanism could be an option in the future. The company also suggested existing low-cost thermal generation maintained value, whilst advocating concerns surrounding the ‘unanticipated consequences’ of rapid renewable uptake.

On the other hand, the company appears to have supported ambitious policies for the electrification of transport, stating support in its 2019 CDP disclosure for a national electric vehicle (EV) target and tax exemptions for EVs. In its 2021 submission on COAG Reform Fund Amendment (No Electric Vehicle Taxes) Bill 2020, the company advocated against announcements from South Australian and Victorian governments to introduce road charges for electric vehicles.

Industry Association Governance: AGL Australia has disclosed its membership of industry associations actively lobbying on climate policy and published a review of its industry association memberships to assess alignment on climate change policy in May 2020. However, this review lacked detail regarding the climate positions of its industry associations, how alignment was assessed, and the framework for addressing potential cases of misalignment. There is evidence that AGL has sought to improve its indirect impact on climate policy: AGL left APPEA and Minerals Council of Australia in 2016 after citing differences in their positioning on climate and energy. It also ended its membership of the Queensland Resources Council in June 2020, again citing differences over views on the energy transition. However, AGL retains membership of the Business Council of Australia which has actively engaged in obstructive lobbying on Australian climate legislation.

QUERIES
DATA SOURCES
Main Web Site Social Media CDP Responses Legislative Consultations Media Reports CEO Messaging Financial Disclosures
Communication of Climate Science
1 NS NA 2 NS 2 NS
Alignment with IPCC on Climate Action
1 NS NA 2 1 1 NS
Supporting the Need for Regulations
0 1 NS 1 NS NS NS
Support of UN Climate Process
1 1 NS -1 1 1 NS
Transparency on Legislation
1 NA 2 NA NA NA NS
Carbon Tax
0 -1 NS 0 0 -1 NS
Emissions Trading
2 1 1 1 NS 1 NS
Energy and Resource Efficiency
0 NS 1 2 NS NS NS
Renewable Energy
0 1 1 -1 -1 0 NS
Energy Transition & Zero Carbon Technologies
1 0 2 1 0 0 NS
GHG Emission Regulation
0 NS 1 0 0 NS NS
Disclosure on Relationships
1 NS 1 NA NA NA NS
Strength of Relationship
STRONG
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
WEAK
 
61%
 
61%
 
48%
 
48%
 
75%
 
75%
 
51%
 
51%
 
60%
 
60%
 
46%
 
46%
 
85%
 
85%
 
87%
 
87%
 
57%
 
57%

How to Read our Relationship Score Map

In this section, we depict graphically the relationships the corporation has with trade associations, federations, advocacy groups and other third parties who may be acting on their behalf to influence climate change policy. Each of the columns above represents one relationship the corporation appears to have with such a third party. In these columns, the top, dark section represents the strength of the relationship the corporation has with the influencer. For example if a corporation's senior executive also held a key role in the trade association, we would deem this to be a strong relationship and it would be on the far left of the chart above, with the weaker ones to the right. Click on these grey shaded upper sections for details of these relationships. The middle section contains a link to the organization score details of the influencer concerned, so you can see the details of its climate change policy influence. Click on the middle sections for for details of the trade associations. The lower section contains the organization score of that influencer, the lower the more negatively it is influencing climate policy.