ACT — Solar Capital of Australia
And maybe the world even. A swathe of positive policy to promote renewables has recently been announced.
In the first place a nation leading, if not world leading, Renewable Energy Target of 100% renewable sources of generation for all power in the State by 2020. We're on the cusp of 2019! This was upped from an initial commitment of only 40% by 2020 and 50%-60% by 2025. 100% was reserved for as far in the future as 2050 originally.
The recent up-scaling of ambitions comes in consequence of the cost for clean technologies improving more rapidly than any analysts anticipated as well as large scale investment by big players with deep pockets. Between the 100MW Sapphire set up in North New South Wales (which will be transformed into a full-blooded Renewable Energy Hub), the 91MW wind installation at Crookwell (which began generating a few weeks ago) and the 100MW Hornsdale 2 (also kicked on really recently) — the ACT government fully expects to be able to deliver on the target.
Additionally, they envisage a State wide Virtual Power Plant utilising behind-the-meter batteries in residential homes. To facilitate this they intend to introduce a subsidy for 5,000 houses in the coming years. This will help drive down wholesale purchase prices for electricity in the market, lower energy bills for homeowners, stabilise the grid, regulate frequency fluctuation as well as preempt or alleviate outages and other emergencies.
Finally, and perhaps most impressively, the State Government is planning a transition to zero emissions vehicles throughoutt 2018-2021 via a short, sharp, action plan. This includes legislation to make it easier for EVs, such as access to bus lanes until 2023. A privilege which will end then as they expect everybody will be driving them at that point.
It's all looking bright for the country's capital!