Renewables and energy news that crossed Meralli’s desk last week…
NSW passes climate bill to write 70 pct by 2035 emissions reduction target into law
NSW parliament has voted unanimously to enshrine the state’s emissions reduction task in law, legislating a new 70 percent by 2035 target as well as the Paris-aligned goal of net zero by 2050. It was passed through the Lower House unanimously after amendments were agreed to in the Upper House to reach a broad consensus. It will now be signed into law by the NSW Governor. (Renew Economy)
New solar installations to hit 413 GW globally this year
BloombergNEF has released its updated global solar market outlook for 2023, projecting that 413 GW of module capacity will be installed this year. This capacity will mostly be driven by China’s contribution of 240 GW, along with strong growth in many other global regions. (PV Magazine)
Report: Climate of the Nation 2023
A significant majority of Australians (at least 75%) are concerned about the impact of the climate crisis on food supply, agriculture, and insurance premiums, and support policies that would force fossil fuel companies to pay for the damage they are causing, according to the Australia Institute’s 2023 Climate of the Nation report, Australia’s longest continuous survey of community attitudes to climate change. This year’s report shows that, amid pressure from record inflation and interest rates, Australians recognise the climate crisis is exacerbating the cost of living crisis and want to shift the burden to polluters.
Key findings from the 2023 Climate of the Nation report include:
Australians support the government introducing new policies that would make the fossil fuel industry pay for its contribution to climate change, including:
- a polluter-pays tax (74% support, 16% oppose)
- a windfall profits tax on the oil and gas industry (66% support, 18% oppose), and;
- a levy on fossil fuel exports to fund climate adaptation (59% support, 24% oppose).
- 75% of Australians are concerned that climate change will result in more expensive insurance premiums, while 21% are not concerned.
- 75% are concerned about climate-related disruptions to supply chains making it hard to buy necessities, while 21% are not concerned.
- Australians blame the excessive profits of electricity companies and poor policy-making, more than climate impacts, for rising electricity prices.
- Australians are concerned climate change will result in droughts and flooding affecting crop production and food supply (80%) and more bushfires (79%). Another 18% are not concerned.
You can read the Australia Institute’s 2023 Climate of the Nation report in full here. (Australian Institute)
Dynamically managing energy loads for a smarter electricity grid
On behalf of the Australian Government, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has announced $864,000 in funding to AGL to develop and trial a price intensity forecasting tool to support dynamic load flexing in the commercial and industrial sectors.
Melbourne Airport, a warehouse and logistics company, a tier 1 supermarket chain, and a water utility company will take part in the project, representing key addressable industries of cold stores, supermarkets, water treatment, and airport market segments. Together these sites offer up a potential of 385 MW load management across the National Electricity Market (NEM). You can read the full media release here. (ARENA)
WA Energy Minister steps down from cabinet
Western Australian Minister for Energy, Mines, and Petroleum, Bill Johnston, has announced his decision to step down from Cabinet and that he will see out the remainder of this term as the Member for Cannington, before retiring at the 2025 State Election. Mr Johnston commenced as Western Australian Labor Assistant State Secretary in January 1998 and, by the time of the next election, will have served the Western Australian Labor party in a full-time role for more than 27 years. (Energy Magazine)
Our photo of the week (from the Meralli archives) was taken at the Tregalana Solar Farm completed in 2022. Tregalana Solar Farm was built by Meralli in two stages and completed in 2022. Located in Whyalla SA, it is a 6,813 MW DC generator feeding into the grid, Treglana Solar Farm is capable of powering an average of 1,528 homes* and has an expected annual CO2 offset of an impressive 6,320 tonnes**.
*Homes powered is based on an average Sydney household with 2.4 people who use 5,237 kWH per year)
** this is ‘tonnes of CO2 equivalent’ to the production of the same amount of energy via coal.