Victorian Greens Continue Push For 100% Renewable Energy By 2030

Victoria Greens - renewable energy

Dr. Tim Read MP | via Facebok

The Victorian Greens will move an amendment in State Parliament this week to boost the Victorian Renewable Energy Target for 2030 to 100%.

The Andrews Labor Government introduced the Renewable Energy (Jobs and Investment) Amendment Bill 2019 into Parliament last month. It would lift the current VRET of  25 per cent renewables by 2020 and 40 per cent by 2025 to 50 per cent by 2030.

Member for Brunswick, Dr. Tim Read, says this isn’t enough.

“Victoria is already on track to reach this target by 2029,” said Dr. Read. “We need a more ambitious target to adequately respond to the climate emergency and to provide stable and reliable energy for Victorian homes and businesses.”

With increasing concerns regarding the state’s ageing fleet of brown coal-fired clunkers, Dr. Read says Victoria needs a strong pipeline of new renewable energy projects – assumed to mean “stronger” as there’s already a bunch of wind and solar energy capacity in the works.

The Victorian Greens say they have already developed and costed a comprehensive plan to achieve a 100 per cent renewables goal. This includes, but isn’t limited to:

  • $9 billion worth of publicly-owned large-scale renewable energy.
  • Upgrading transmission networks across north and west Victoria – these upgrades would be publicly owned.
  • Building $500 million worth of publicly-owned energy storage.
  • Community energy hubs.

“We need the Government to aim higher and understand that the future is renewable,” said Dr. Read.

The Andrews Government probably gets that. They just have a bit of trouble in understanding the right way to get there, acknowledging when they’ve made a mistake and then rectifying it in a timely fashion to minimise carnage.

Souping Up Solar Homes (And Fixing It)

The Greens also say they support the Andrews Government’s goal of putting solar panels on 650,000 homes through its (currently very problematic) Solar Homes program, but they’ll take it further. This includes a “Solar Gardens” program, which would provide $1,000 to each adult living in a rental home or apartment for the purposes of buying into a large rooftop solar power system installed in their local area.

While on the topic of the Solar Homes program, Dr. Read has previously stated the rebates for PV shouldn’t be handed out like a “golden ticket” as they are now. This approach is not only frustrating Victorians, but sending solar companies to the wall.

Dr. Read wants to see the value of the rebate reduced in order to boost allocation levels to help meet demand.

“The Government needs to acknowledge the problems caused by its poorly thought through solar rebate scheme, and urgently make changes to ensure the scheme is a success. It’s too important to fail,” he said early this month.

The next round of the rebate lottery for home solar panel installations will start on September 2 (next Monday), not September 1 as previously advised. The Andrews Government figured out (with a bit of pushing) releasing the allocation on Sunday probably wasn’t a good idea.

It remains to be seen if rebate allocation for September is anywhere close to demand.

UPDATE: The Victorian Government has boosted solar rebate allocation – and in a big way.

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

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