Record year for renewable energy in Australia

The lineup of large-scale renewable energy projects has led to highest levels of renewables investment across Australia.

The Clean Energy Council (CEC) has stated 41 renewable energy projects have so far been executed in 2017.

The CEC boss Kane Thornton said in a statement that the figure was a clear indication that Australia was experiencing a wave of an unprecedented investment in renewable’s like solar and wind approximated to be well above $8bn hitting new solar records.

Interestingly, this investment is expected to generate about 4,680 new jobs and huge economic benefits for businesses across the country.

“These 41 projects will deliver over 4,330 MW of new capacity, which is crucial to increasing supply in the energy market,” Mr. Thornton stated.

Record-breaking highs in private solar investment

According to the latest figures from the CEC, private investors are already financing 26 projects that are under construction. It’s expected that 14 more will be initiated later this year.

The CEC also noted that investment in rooftop solar by Australian households was booming.

“It is incredible to see the shift in conversation and action around and in the industry,” Mr. Thornton noted as we hit new solar records.

Additionally, it’s projected that in 2017, residential solar systems would deliver more than 1,000 MW of capacity of over $2 billion. Combined, this amounts to a new solar record-breaking level of private investment in home solar energy generation.

Mr. Thornton applauded the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, the state and territory governments, as well as the Clean Energy Finance Corporation. He pointed to the fact that it’s because of them that the 2020 Renewable Energy Target is almost becoming more and more a reality as we hit these solar records.

Queensland and NSW top the solar charge

The CEC figures show that investments in solar have increased six times more in 2017 compared to 2016. The combined volume of all solar projects completed in 2016 was 264.1 MW.

But so far this year, 2,210.2 MW of solar projects have been secured. Currently, 1,881.2 MW are under construction considering there’s one remaining financial quarter.

“States like Queensland and NSW are leading the charge, with $5,403.5 million being invested in these parts of Australia alone,” Mr. Thornton added.

However, the CEC chief exec was quick to warn that the absence of a national Clean Energy Target could slow down the solar investment boom.

“It’s time to lock in a long-term policy and get on with the job,” he said.

A more detailed breakdown of projects committed so far can be found on the Clean Energy Council website.

The Author

You’ll see me around the website quite a bit, especially if you’re in Queensland. I was born and raised in Brisbane and this is where I begun my electrical engineering career close to fifteen years ago. Over the years I have been heavily involved in the residential sector however spent quite a few years working on large scale projects in the mining, oil and gas sector. I love technology, home automation, renewable energy technology and most of all, solar energy. It took a good 50 years before the world realised that our sun is a reliable, practical and economically responsible resource and this coupled with the endless supply sunlight makes solar panels the best option for homes and businesses throughout Australia.