Australians want more renewable energy

21st Mar 2013

Australia – its climate and conditions a haven for solar panels and wind power, and with some highly publicised clean energy developments – appears like a renewable energy hotspot.

Yet according to a national survey revealed by AMR Research, two-thirds of the 1,283 Australians surveyed thought Australia would rank higher than 31st in the world for its level of renewable energy production.

AMR research also discovered that a large number – 87 per cent in fact – of Australians want more action by all sectors, including the government, to make Australia a top ten producer of renewable energy.

This research was commissioned by World Wildlife Foundation (WWF) Australia for Earth Hour – an event coming up on March 23.

Earth Hour started in Australia and is now a worldwide occasion where people turn off their lights for an hour to show their solidarity in committing to renewable energy. 

A particular focus of Earth Hour is encouraging the increasing uptake of solar energy.

"We expect to see solar energy continue to boom at the household level. Within months we will have more than one million solar rooftops, and this polling shows that a further 1.5 million households would also consider joining them," said Earth Hour spokesperson Kellie Caught.

"For every million households that switch to renewables that’s equivalent to taking 2.1 million cars off our roads or planting over 6 million trees."

Many respondents also revealed that they would be a lot more likely to switch over to solar power if there was no up-front payment, through a method such as solar leasing.

Solar leasing is still a very new phenomenon in Australia, with commercial solar leasing available to business owners aiming to increase their energy efficiency and reduce their carbon emissions.

The practice has been commonplace in the US for some time along with residential solar panel leasing, which would have the potential to grow solar panel uptake in Australia by removing those initial financial barriers.

Posted by Mike Peacock

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