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Clean Energy Outlook Confidence Index

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Posted on 7 July, 2021

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This index provides an insight into the status of the industry from leading CEOs and senior managers.

Since July 2018, the Clean Energy Council has conducted a bi-annual survey of senior leaders from across the clean energy industry to measure their investment confidence, employment trends and the business challenges across the industry.

The July 2021 report is based on a survey conducted in June 2020 and consisted of the responses from over 60 CEOs and senior managers.

The results show an overall decrease in investor confidence since the last survey in December 2020. Industry leaders cited grid connection issues and unhelpful and unpredictable government intervention are the primary reasons for the sector's second-lowest confidence level since 2019.

Concerns relating to the grid connection process was once again ranked as the top business challenge. The industry also rated network capacity and transmission concerns, lack of long-term federal energy policy and future market design uncertainty as major challenges.

Investment confidence

What is your level of confidence to make investments in renewable energy in Australia in the next three years?

Compared to 12 months ago, investment confidence has dropped from 7.3 in July 2020 to 6.3, now at its second-lowest level since December 2019. The industry cites grid connection, political interference and grid connection concerns as key reasons for declining investment confidence.

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Investment confidence across states

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Investment confidence continues to differ across states, with NSW, VIC and QLD scoring highest despite dropping since July 2020.

Employment

How do you expect the number of people your company employs in renewable energy in Australia to change in the next 12 months?

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The response from industry leaders has increased slightly, with just over half of all responders expecting to employ more staff in the next 12 months.

Top business challenges

What factors are creating the greatest challenges for your business to develop renewable energy projects in Australia?

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The top business challenge rated by the industry was once again concerns and challenges related to grid connection process and technical requirements, with the industry citing this as the top challenge since July 2019.

Unpredictable or unhelpful government intervention in the energy market was cited as the second biggest business challenge, followed by under-investment in network capacity and unpredictable or lack of long-term integrated federal energy and climate policy. The top five and six challenges relate concerns around future market design and climate policy and concerns around marginal loss factors (MLFs).

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11 Dec 20