Western Australia has an exciting opportunity to join the race for renewable energy – and the investment and jobs it brings – according to the clean energy industry peak body.
The Western Australian Government can step up to the plate and attract more renewable energy projects with just a few simple policy measures, Clean Energy Council (CEC) chief executive Kane Thornton said.
“Over the past few years we’ve seen Australia’s renewable energy industry grow from a niche player to a multi-billion dollar industry, but Western Australia hasn’t fully capitalised on the opportunities on offer… yet,” he said.
“The CEC is calling on the Western Australian Government to cement its place as the resources capital of Australia, and take advantage of its abundant sun, wind, biomass and waves to generate affordable clean energy.
“I have written to Energy Minister Dr Mike Nahan to ask him to advocate for a bipartisan resolution to the Renewable Energy Target, which would see Western Australia attract more than $1 billion in new investment out to 2020.”
The CEC has also recommended 15 simple policy measures that would help WA race to the top of the national renewable energy leaderboard, while driving greater competition and consumer choice in the electricity sector.
The CEC launched a WA chapter in Perth in February, dedicated to creating opportunities for, and addressing the needs of, renewable energy businesses in the west. The council also launched a new publication, targeted at small- and medium-sized businesses, on how to improve electricity use.
“This is an exciting time for renewable energy in Western Australia, and we heard from many businesses in the state there was a need for a strong industry body to give them a clean voice on policy and regulatory issues,” Mr Thornton said.
“We chose Perth to launch our new guide to improving electricity use in your business, which aims to provide small and medium-sized businesses with more information on how they can reduce their operating costs through measures like installing solar and storage, or shifting their energy use.”
The guide is part of the CEC’s Future-Proofing in Australia’s Electricity Distribution Industry project, supported by $878,000 funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, which aims to enhance the flexibility and resilience of Australia’s electricity distribution systems for the future.