Report projects 28,000 more jobs for renewables sector

Ensuring that Clean Energy Finance Corporation projects are additional to the Renewable Energy Target will result in jobs, more renewables and emissions reductions at potentially no additional cost to consumers, according to a report released by the Australian Solar Council and WWF.

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

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

WWF’s Climate Change National Manager Kellie Caught said “By 2030, together the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (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.”

Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Council John Grimes 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 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 with 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.

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.

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