Australian news, and some related international items

Australia’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation a chance to turbocharge renewable energy

Next generation of clean energy technology is within Australia’s grasp, SMH, Kane Thornton October 5, 2011 “…….The Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) pledged under the federal government’s carbon price package will use $10 billion of carbon price revenue from big polluters as loans for new, clean energy technologies. It will be overseen by an independent board of finance professionals.

The CEFC is a sign the federal government understands what is needed by the clean energy industry. It is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to turbocharge the next generation of clean energy technologies and make better use of Australia’s world-class sunshine, wind, waves and geothermal hot rocks. Clean energy is a race in which Australia is fortunate enough to have a winged keel, but we haven’t done nearly enough to harness our abundant renewable energy resources. The CEFC will go a long way towards addressing a generation of underinvestment in this area.
Last year, renewable energy provided about 8.6 per cent of Australia’s electricity. We are headed for 20 per cent by 2020 under the bipartisan Renewable Energy Target. A recent review by the Productivity Commission found that most of Australia’s trading partners have introduced some kind of target for renewable energy. The debate on a carbon price continues, but the energy target is currently Australia’s largest climate change policy, set to lead to the reduction of about 380 million tonnes of carbon emissions by the end of the decade. Like the IT industry in the late 1990s, some incredibly bright minds across the world have turned their attention to developing new technologies that can produce clean, renewable electricity…..lobally there are plenty of examples where the investment is indeed paying off. Figures from Bloomberg New Energy Finance show that $US243 billion ($A252 billion) was invested in clean energy last year, as the sector continues to outstrip traditional energy. Some of the world’s biggest players are seeing the value in clean energy investments, including Google, GE, the US military, Samsung and engineering giant Siemens. GE’s Ecomagination program made more than $80 billion for the company over the past five years by combining good business and sustainability.

Clean energy is a massive opportunity for Australia. There will be the occasional setback, but this is an opportunity we should be seizing with both hands rather than looking for reasons to sit on them.

October 6, 2011 - Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, energy

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