The Victorian Government's new targets for renewable energy of 25 per cent by 2020 and 40 per cent by 2025 are another major boost for the renewable energy sector, and will drive investment and jobs to the state at a time when the whole of Australia is clambering for a share of the renewable energy pie, the Clean Energy Council said today.
Clean Energy Council Chief Executive Kane Thornton said the market for renewable energy in Australia was heating up after a tough 2015, and smart states were positioning themselves well to reap the benefits.
“Victoria’s ambitious target to reach 40 per cent renewable energy by 2025 makes the state a very attractive destination for clean energy investment at a time when activity in the sector is ramping up significantly,” Mr Thornton said.
“Australia is about halfway towards meeting the 2020 Renewable Energy Target, which means many new projects will need to ink investment deals over the next couple of years.
“We have seen about 450 megawatts of projects committed nationally in the past three months alone, so this move by Victoria is smart timing – and should see Victoria claim a big share of the renewable energy pie out to 2025 and beyond.”
The Victorian Government will support the new targets by running an auctions scheme for large-scale renewable energy projects, including a series of technology-neutral auctions, and solar auctions. The ACT Government has run several rounds of similar reverse auctions with positive results.
“Today’s announcement follows the Victorian Government’s commitment to zero net emissions by 2050 last week, and shows that the state is committed to following through on its emissions reduction responsibilities and creating economic opportunities at the same time.”
Mr Thornton said the transition towards a 21st century energy system was not without its challenges, and required a strategic and strong approach from all levels of government.
“Victoria faces many challenges in transitioning away from emissions-intensive forms of generation towards new renewable energy, and it’s vital for the community that the shift is managed well,” he said.
“Today’s strong announcement will accelerate that transition, and facilitate the creation of new jobs in emerging industries in regional and rural areas of Victoria, where renewable energy power plants are usually built.
“The renewable energy industry is excited to keep building, employing, investing and generating – and with this support from the Victorian Government, the future is looking very bright.”
Please contact Clean Energy Council Communications Manager Laura Szekfy on 0410 277 393 for more information or to arrange an interview.