Renewables Boom Trigger Decline in Emissions

Engineering researchers say that the renewables boom in Australia causes the gradual decline of greenhouse gas emissions in the country. And this trend will continue for the next three years.

Professionals from the Australian National University gauge national emissions will decline by 3 to 4 percent by 2022, which will end the year-on-year increases registered since the abolition of the carbon price scheme.

The Guardian, however, also reported that the emissions cuts until the 2020s would depend on the federal and state governments who back up the additional expansion of solar and wind

According to Andrew Blakers, a Professor of Engineering, “Solar and wind energy offers the cheapest way to make deep cuts in emissions because of their low and continually falling cost.”

“If the renewable energy pipeline is stopped or slowed because of insufficient transmission and storage, then emissions may rise again from 2022,” he added.

2020 Renewable Energy Target 

The 2020 federal renewable energy target mainly drives the present renewables boom in Australia. Last year alone, the country had approximately 3.5 gigawatts of capacity, more than three times the capacity in 2017. The target, which is around 23 percent of the national electricity demand, has been achieved. 

Although more businesses have signed renewable energy contracts without support from the government, experts claim the boom is in jeopardy. Continuous boom in renewable energy is impossible sans a policy with bipartisan political support to encourage the switch to a cleaner grid. 

Blakers added that clean energy was so cheap that support from the government would be enough. With this, Australia can achieve 50 percent renewables by 2024 and 75 percent by 2030.

His analysis showed Australia would meet its 2030 target without depending on carry-over credits. Blakers said, “I think a lot of people are hooked up on energy policy but we are doing very well as things stand. A neutral policy is enough to make it.”

Other clean energy experts are one in claiming renewables can supply enough power in Australia in a few years. Green Energy Markets’ Tristan Edis found clean energy would provide 35 percent of Australia’s overall electricity needs within two years. This is due to solar power transforming the national energy market.

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