June 14, 2022
With so much chatter and concern about increasing energy prices, it's little wonder that people are turning to renewable energy as a "new" source of power.
Much like the 1990 recession we "had to have" (according to Paul Keating), many renewable energy industry experts believe the fossil fuel energy crisis is exactly what's needed to turn heads towards the sun and wind as a natural alternative.
So, how and where are our solar and wind farms tracking these days?
Read on to find out more.
Australia is a doubly lucky place in that it's both a sunburnt country and a windy one.
Yet as of 2021, only 32% of Australia’s electricity was powered by renewable energy, according to the Clean Energy Council (CEC) up 5% from 2020 and 17% since 2017.
In good news, however, Tasmania's energy production comes almost entirely from renewable energy sources with South Australia not far behind with 60% of its energy produced from wind and solar farms.
Even some of our islands feature wind and solar farms with popular Rottnest Island off the coast of Perth not just the ultimate quokka place but also housing 600kW wind and solar farms.
The State Government recently gave these facilities a $62 million boost, which will double the solar farm's production and replace the wind turbine generator.
There's further promising news ahead too with Queensland being a great example of how bottom of the ladder states - just 19.6% of the state's energy is powered by green resources - can come to this same party big time.
The Sunshine State can now boast one of the Southern Hemisphere's largest wind farms and certainly Australia's biggest wind farm "precinct".
Construction on the $2 billion MacIntyre Wind Farm precinct, 230km southwest of Brisbane, began this month and will comprise 102MW Karara Wind Farm and the adjacent 923MW MacIntyre Wind Farm.
When completed in 2024, the extraordinary 1GW of energy produced from the two farms' 180 wind turbines will power 700,000 homes.
Queensland's publicly-owned transmission company Powerlink has also signed an agreement to connect the MacIntyre Wind Precinct to the state grid.
The MacIntyre Wind Farm precinct followed a "bumper year" for large-scale renewable energy projects in 2021, according to the CEC.
CEC's chief executive officer, Kane Thornton, said more than any other year so far, 2021 signalled the inevitability of Australia's clean energy future.
The large-scale sector saw the production of an additional 2955 MW across 27 projects, including Australia's three largest solar farms and two of the country's three largest wind farms.
However, it was again small-scale solar farms that led green energy growth, adding 3.3 GW in new power capacity for the fifth year in a row and accounting for 25% of Australia’s total renewable energy generation in 2021.
Yet between wind and sun, wind is still leading the way as the country's top - and cheapest - source of clean energy generation with nearly 12% of our electricity power sourced from the breeze.
So, what's next for Australia's renewable energy industry particularly with states such as Queensland running ahead to win the green power race?
Judging from recent facts and figures, to say nothing of the current energy crisis, it's expected the industry will soar ahead.
We're also looking forward to bringing you more news on utilising wind and power to literally energise your household.
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