New Report: 28,000 renewables jobs boom if CEFC projects additional to RET

Posted on 13 November 2012  | 
Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
© CC Some rights reserved by http://www.flickr.com/photos/internationalrivers/ Enlarge
A report released today from the Australian Solar Council and WWF finds making Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) projects additional to the Renewable Energy Target (RET) would result in more renewables, jobs, and emission reductions, at potentially no additional cost to consumers1.

The CEFC manages a $10 billion fund designed to assist in overcoming barriers to the deployment of renewable energy, energy efficiency and low emissions technologies.

The report, prepared by AECOM and ROAM, looked at the impact of allowing projects access to Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) above the current RET 2020 target.

The report found that by 2020 there could be 37% more large-scale renewables, 5,000 more jobs, and substantially less emissions. Substantial gains were also found for 2030.

WWF’s Climate Change National Manager, Kellie Caught said, “By 2030, together the CEFC and an increased RET could create 28,000 new jobs, double current estimates, and significantly reduce emission, putting us firmly on a low carbon pathway”.

“There is an opportunity for the $10 billion CEFC to have an even greater benefit beyond commercialising a broader range of renewables, at potentially no additional cost to the public. You would expect with the current tight fiscal environment, the Government would want greater bang for their buck,” said Ms Caught.

John Grimes, Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Council said, “The new modelling report confirms solar will be the big winner from the CEFC in the early years.

“The modelling made some conservative assumptions and we predict that if the CEFC was made additional to the RET, it would drive a solar boom and bring down costs faster.”

The modelling finds that the solar boom will be at the expense of new wind energy, which is not the intent of the CEFC but could be addressed if the CEFC was additional to the RET.

The Solar Council and WWF are calling on the Federal Government to make the CEFC additional to the RET by either creating ‘top-ups” like is currently done for waste coal mine gas, or to increase the 2020 and/or 2030 target.

“Increasing the RET out to 2030 would provide an important safety net for investors, increase the security of the renewables industry, and do away with the boom bust cycle currently experienced by solar. This is critical for building a strong low-carbon economy in Australia,” said Ms Caught.


WWF-Australia contact:

Karen Kalpage, Communications Manager, WWF-Australia, 0432 206592
Solar Council Contact: John Grimes, Chief Executive, Australian Solar Council via Susan Fitzpatrick-Napier 02 8006 0424.
Full report is available above for download.

1. Making CEFC projects additional to current LRET could add additional 0.2-0.3 cents per KWh to retail tariffs but this is likely to be offset by lower wholesale prices, resulting in no additional cost to consumers.

Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
© CC Some rights reserved by http://www.flickr.com/photos/internationalrivers/ Enlarge

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