Victoria eyes 40pc renewable energy target

Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews (left) at Ararat Wind Farm
Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews (left) at Ararat Wind Farm

Victoria has a new mantra for its Renewable Energy Target: 25 per cent by 2020 and 40 per cent by 2025.

Victoria will more than double its renewable energy use in just nine years in a plan it hopes will create $2.5 billion worth of investment.

Right now 14 per cent of Victoria’s energy is renewable, and Labor wants to lift that to 25 per cent by 2020. Just five years later the target will jump to 40 per cent.

Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio announced the targets while marking the arrival of the first turbine blades at the Ararat Wind Farm.

Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio says Victoria is saving the Commonwealth’s Renewable Energy Target.

“Investors have lost faith in the national target but we are restoring the confidence needed to invest,” Ms D’Ambrosio said.

“We’ve developed Victorian renewable energy targets that generate thousands of new jobs, particularly in regional Victoria, while also cutting Victoria’s greenhouse gas emissions.”

The government expects up to 5400MW of large-scale renewable energy capacity will be built by 2025, representing an estimated $2.5 billion worth of investment in the state. Ms D’ambrosia said that means an additional 4000 jobs in the renewable energy sector during the expected peak year of construction in 2024.

Premier Daniel Andrews also announced an auctions scheme – running a series of technology-neutral auctions, as well as solar auctions – which will see project developers compete to be the lowest cost provider.

Successful bids will be given long-term contracts to support their projects, providing certainty for investors. Separate auctions will be held for large-scale solar projects.

“The world is shifting to renewable energy – it creates jobs, drives growth, and protects our environment – and Victorians want to be at the forefront of that,” Mr Andrews said.