Renewable energy targets set by the Victorian government to reach 20% market share by 2020 are expected to be reached on time, if not before the projected dates.
An analysis by the government has revealed that wind farms currently under construction in the state as well as growing solar power installations will make up 18% of the energy sector by 2020, showing a likelihood for Victoria to meet, and exceed their targets.
The Victorian state government has stated its aims to reach 20% renewable energy by 2020, this is in light of the state’s current percentage of 12% renewable energy, with 85% of the state’s electricity still generated from brown-coal power plants.
Energy consultancy Green Energy Markets has revealed that 18% renewable energy share is essentially guaranteed for Victoria given current successes and projects under way.
Green Energy Market Director, Ric Brazzale, says the goals will be met “really easily”.
Renewable Energy Targets Inadequate, Say Critics
The Victorian government has announced a number of measures that they hope will assist in the growth of the renewable energy sector, such as:
– Promotion and assistance programs to encourage household adoption of solar panels and batteries
– Funding of community renewable energy projects
– Governmental renewable energy practices being implemented as promotion of RETs
Furthermore, the Green Energy Market report suggested that if large coal power plants in regional Victoria were to close, renewable targets would increase further to 22% by 2020.
Not for profit organisation Environment Victoria has backed up Green Energy’s claims, suggesting that meeting a 20% target would be nothing more than “business as usual”, meaning it cannot be regarded as ambitious for the government.
Environment Australia has pressured the Victorian government to take a more proactive approach, like other states, of 30% by 2020 and 50% by 2025.
These predictions are realistic, according to Environment Australia, are likely if growth in renewable energy continues at the same rate as well as the closure of at least 1 coal fired power plant by 2020 and another by 2025 is guaranteed.
Pressure as also mounted from other political parties, with Greens environment spokewoman Ellen Sandell calling the targets “completely inadequate” .
In response to industry pressure, Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio explained the 20% goal was a minimum and reviews of the 2020 target were under way.
Sustainable Practices for a Stronger Economy
The expansion of the renewable energy sector also promises more jobs and an a sustainable and secure industry.
“[Renewable energy] projects will promote job creation and economic development especially in regional Victoria where renewable energy projects are located” said Minister D’Ambrosio.