The Clean Energy Council has congratulated Trustpower and Siemens on the launch of the second stage of the Snowtown Wind Farm in South Australia, but warned other projects would be few and far between under the Federal Government’s current proposal to slash the Renewable Energy Target (RET).

Clean Energy Council Acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton said the second stage of the Snowtown project would power the equivalent of 170,000 homes and offset 700,000 tonnes of carbon emissions every year.   

“The South Australian Government has recognised the many benefits that renewable energy can bring to the local economy, and its support has been extremely important for the continued development of wind power in the state,” Mr Thornton said.

“Wind power now provides more than a quarter of South Australia’s electricity and, in combination with rooftop solar, it provided more than the state’s total energy needs between 9.30am and 6pm on one day in September this year. Along with the billions of dollars in investment and economic activity wind power has generated in the state, renewable energy has been a remarkable success story for South Australia.”

Mr Thornton said the review of the Renewable Energy Target by the Federal Government this year meant investment was extremely hard to come by for the Australian renewable energy industry.

“Business is booming in renewable energy across the globe – just not Down Under. Analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows that Australia is having its worst year for clean energy investment in more than a decade, and it has now slipped behind countries such as Algeria and Myanmar,” he said.

“This investment freeze is likely to continue while the Federal Government’s review of the policy is creating so much uncertainty across the sector.

“A week ago it led to the announcement that 100 workers at Keppel Prince Engineering will lose their jobs, and this is just a taste of what’s to come unless we can resolve this quickly.”

Please contact Clean Energy Council Media Manager Mark Bretherton on 0413 556 981 for more information or to arrange an interview.