Download full report

Glossary and Abbreviations

Download section


Term Description


Refers to reductions in CO2-e emissions.

Aggregation finance

The provision of CEFC finance via co-finance intermediary partners, to aggregate customer demand that would otherwise be too expensive to be serviced directly by the CEFC.


The means by which money from the Treasury is made available to the Australian Government by the Parliament.

Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)

An Australian Government agency which funds activities that are expected to advance renewable energy technologies towards commercial readiness, improve business models or reduce overall industry costs.

Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act 2012 (CEFC Act)

The enabling legislation which creates and empowers the CEFC.

Clean Energy Innovation Fund

The Innovation Fund uses CEFC finance to invest in innovative clean energy companies and projects. It is operated in consultation with ARENA, drawing on the complementary experience and expertise of the two organisations. Final investment approval is provided by the CEFC Board, which is responsible for all CEFC investment commitments made under the CEFC Act.

Clean energy and clean energy technology

The types of technology the CEFC is permitted to invest in, which includes ‘renewable energy technologies’, ‘energy efficiency technologies’ and ‘low emissions technologies’ as defined in the CEFC Act.

Climate Bonds

A specific type of green bond issued by the Climate Bond Standards and Certification initiative.


Carbon dioxide equivalent is a standard measure that takes account of the different global warming potential of greenhouse gases and expresses the cumulative effect in a common unit (definition from the National Carbon Offset Standard).

Co-finance partner; co-financed products

The CEFC’s finance is indirectly provided to end users via a third party, such as a bank or financial institution. The CEFC develops products with co-financiers to leverage their capital and sales networks. These products can be distinguished from a direct CEFC loan where the finance moves directly from the CEFC to the project owner.

Committed investment

Where the CEFC has made a commitment to invest funds if all necessary pre-conditions are fulfilled by the counterparties.


Concessionality is defined by the Investment Mandate and reflects the mark-to-market valuation of loans committed that financial year. It is measured as the difference between the net present value of each loan’s future cash flows, discounted at market rates, and the net present value of each loan’s future cash flows, discounted at the given concessional rate.

Cornerstone investor

Cornerstone investors are usually large institutional investors, or reputable individuals of substance, whose early stage involvement in an investment signals to the market that an opportunity may be worthwhile for other investors to also consider.

Corporate facility or corporate loan

Typically, a loan to a company (rather than a specific project) for its smaller-scale projects, or a bundle of projects, often secured against the assets or operations of the corporate entity.

Dollars ($)

All references to dollars are Australian dollars unless otherwise specified.

Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD)

A set of principles that corporations and government entities must report against under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).

Energy efficiency technologies

Energy efficiency technologies, as defined in the CEFC Act, include technologies (including enabling technologies) that are related to energy conservation and demand management technologies.

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)

The Australian Government’s central piece of environmental legislation, which provides a legal framework to protect and manage nationally and internationally important flora, fauna, ecological communities and heritage places.


In finance terms, owned capital (such as shares) in a business or enterprise.

Export Finance and Insurance Corporation (Efic)

An Australian Government statutory authority that provides finance and support to Australian exporters.

External benefits

Benefits that are enjoyed by parties outside a transaction e.g. emissions reduction that benefits the environment.

Forecast lifetime yield

The annualised weighted average of forecast income on outstanding principal balance over the life of the investment.

Government Policy Order

An instrument to direct government entities made under the PGPA Act.

Green bonds

A generic term for climate bonds.

Green price

The price for renewable energy certificates (RECs) that are created and sold by electricity generation facilities registered as accredited renewable energy facilities under the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000. Renewable energy facilities typically benefit from both the ‘black price’ and the ‘green price’ for each megawatt hour of electricity generated.

Greenhouse gases

The six Kyoto Protocol classes of greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide (CO2-e), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs) and sulphur hexafluoride (SF6).

Hybrid technology

A combination of technologies that integrate a renewable energy generation technology with other technologies into a combined system.

Investment Mandate

A formal Ministerial Direction made under the CEFC Act which specifies conditions under which the CEFC may perform its investment function.


In reference to renewables, a power station large enough to earn certificates under the LRET (i.e. above 100kW for solar PV).

Large-scale generation certificates (LGCs)

Tradeable certificates created under Section 17 of the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000. One LGC is equivalent to 1MWh (megawatt hour) of eligible renewable electricity produced by an accredited renewable power station above its baseline.

Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET)

The LRET creates a financial incentive for the establishment or expansion of renewable energy power stations, such as wind, solar farms and hydro-electric power stations. It does this by legislating demand for Large-scale Generation Certificates (LGCs). One LGC can be created for each megawatt-hour of eligible renewable electricity produced by an accredited renewable power station.

Lifetime abatement

The estimated amount of abated emissions over a project’s useful life.

Low emissions technology

The CEFC Board considers low emissions technologies on a case-by-case basis. See the Investment Guidelines on the CEFC website:

Merchant basis

In respect of renewable energy generation, energy sold onto the spot market without the benefit of a fixed price power purchase agreement where the price received is the prevailing market price at the time of sale.

National Australian Built Environment Rating System (NABERS)

A national ratings system that measures the environmental performance of a building or tenancy including energy efficiency, water usage, waste management and indoor environment quality.

Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme (NatHERS)

A national star rating system (out of 10) that rates the energy efficiency of a home, based on its design.

National Electricity Market (NEM)

A regulated electricity trading market that interconnects the electricity grids of the states and territories of New South Wales, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT.


Not connected to the electricity grid, such as in remote areas.

Offtake agreement

An agreement between a producer (of energy or crops) and a purchaser to purchase production output for a defined period at a defined price.

Photovoltaic (PV)

A type of technology that converts energy from the sun into electricity, as in solar PV.

Portfolio Benchmark Return (PBR)

A long-term target rate of return established by the CEFC Investment Mandate, against which the performance of the portfolio invested by the Corporation is measured.

Positive externalities

Benefits which are not exclusive to parties to a contract, such as an investment contract. May include reduced carbon emissions which benefit society as a whole. It is a requirement of the CEFC Investment Mandate that positive externalities be considered when the CEFC makes investment decisions.

Power Purchase Agreement (PPA)

A type of offtake agreement where a purchaser agrees to purchase and a supplier agrees to supply future generated electricity, usually at a specified price for a defined period.

Project finance

Long-term financing of infrastructure and industrial projects (such as a utility-scale generator or an onsite generation facility) which will be repaid from the projected cash flows of the project without recourse to the balance sheets of the sponsors.

Project proponents

The ‘proposers’ or owners of a given project, as distinct from the project financiers.

Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act)

An Act about the governance, performance and accountability of, and the use and management of public resources by, the Commonwealth, Commonwealth entities and Commonwealth companies, and for related purposes.

Reef Funding Program

The Reef Funding Program is a $1 billion investment program targeting clean energy projects in the Reef catchment area. The program makes finance available for clean energy businesses and projects which support the delivery of the Government's Reef 2050 plan, aiming to bring the benefits of clean energy to support the long-term health of the Great Barrier Reef.


Repayment of an existing loan with a new loan.

Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs)

A generic term for tradeable certificates under the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000.

Renewable Energy Target (RET)

A target for the production of electricity from renewable energy sources under the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000. Made up of the small-scale renewables scheme (SRES) and the large-scale target (LRET).

Renewable energy technologies

Clean energy technologies that are defined as ‘renewable energy technologies’ under the CEFC Act, and include hybrids that integrate renewable energy technologies, and technologies that are related to renewable technologies, including enabling technologies.


Investment amounts that exit the portfolio (e.g. by sale, repayment, cancellation of all or part of the facility, reduction in quantum borrowed etc.).

Senior debt

Debt that takes priority in repayment over other unsecured or more junior debt.

Special Account

A type of Australian Government account in which funds are held for a specified purpose. The CEFC Act creates a Special Account in order to fund the CEFC.

Subordinated debt

Where two or more financiers are involved in offering finance, one may take a ‘subordinated’ or ‘junior debt’ position relevant to the other (‘senior debt’) in the event of a loss (i.e. one financier may rank after the other financier in priority for recovery in the event the finance recipient becomes insolvent and cannot repay the loan).

Sustainable Cities Investment Program

The Sustainable Cities Investment Program aims to invest $1 billion over 10 years in clean energy and energy efficient technology solutions in cities and the built environment.


Tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas.


Length or term of a loan.

Total Annual Remuneration Package (TARP)

Total remunerative benefits for staff including salary, superannuation and any other benefits.


Abbreviation Full Name


Administrative Arrangements Orders


Australian Accounting Standards


Australian Accounting Standards Board


Australian Industry Participation Plans


Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006


Australian National Audit Office


Australian Renewable Energy Agency


Australian Securities Exchange


Bloomberg New Energy Finance


Carbon capture and storage


Clean Energy Finance Corporation


Clean Energy Finance Corporation Act 2012


Carbon dioxide


Concentrated solar power


Employee Assistance Program


Equal Employment Opportunity (Commonwealth Authorities) Act 1987


Export Finance and Insurance Corporation


Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999


Emissions Reduction Fund


Ecologically sustainable development


Environmental, social and governance


Fringe benefits tax


Freedom of Information Act 1982


Public Governance, Performance and Accountability (Financial Reporting) Rule 2015


Full-time equivalent


Financial assets at fair value through profit and loss


General government sector


Greenhouse gases


Green Investment Bank


Government Policy Order


Goods and Services Tax




Gigawatt hour


Held to maturity


Information Publication Scheme


Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit


Key performance indicators




Kilowatt hour


Light emitting diode


Large-scale generation certificate


Large-scale Renewable Energy Target




Member of Parliament




Megawatt hour


National Australian Built Environment Rating System


Nationwide House Energy Rating Scheme


National Electricity Market


Non-Governmental Organisation


Parliamentary Budget Office


Portfolio Benchmark Return


Portfolio Budget Statement


Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013


Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013


Power Purchase Agreement


Public Private Partnership




Renewable Energy Certificates


Renewable Energy Target


Total Annual Remuneration Package


Work, Health and Safety Act 2011