ARENA aims to further reduce cost of solar through new investment plan

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on reddit
Reddit
Share on email
Email
The 50MW Kidston Solar Project in the north of Queensland. Image: Genex Power.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will support projects that further lower the cost of renewable generation as part of a new investment strategy aimed at underpinning the transition to net zero emissions.

ARENA funding will be used for projects that optimise the electricity transition – including energy storage, large-scale grid integration and flexible demand – through an expanded mandate that will also see the agency back the commercialisation of ‘clean’ hydrogen for both domestic and export applications.

“We need to utilise Australia’s abundant sun and wind resources to produce, use and supply renewable energy,” said ARENA CEO Darren Miller. “We need to optimise this transition through energy storage, large-scale grid integration, flexible demand and further reducing the cost of solar and wind.”

Miller said the new priorities take into account the key technologies and sectors where Australia can benefit in the shift to net zero emissions.

ARENA’s expanded mandate will also see it support low-emissions aluminium and steel production and explore opportunities to scale up carbon capture and storage (CSS).

The investment plan is in line with the Australian government’s Low Emission Technology Roadmap, which was launched last year and is prioritising five areas – including hydrogen production, long-duration energy storage and CSS.

While that roadmap will see the country invest more than AU$18 billion (US$12.91 billion) in low emissions technologies over the next decade, the plan did not commit to a net zero emissions target by 2050.

Since the roadmap was launched, ARENA has since secured an AU$1.62 billion funding package from the government as part of the agency’s broadened mandate to explore the development of technologies such as energy storage and hydrogen.

“We are at the beginning of a critical decade for Australia and the world as we make the investments required to reduce emissions in line with international commitments. To get to net zero, we need to invest today in the technologies that are going to transform our energy system and our economy in the years to come,” Miller said.

Since its foundation in 2012, ARENA has provided AU$1.77 billion in funding to more than 600 renewable energy projects. Earlier this year, it selected three green hydrogen projects that will share in AU$103 million to support their development.

Read Next

September 20, 2021
Vattenfall has increased its emissions reduction targets to be in line with the 1.5 degrees Celsius scenario set out in the Paris Climate Agreement in a move that has been approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) and which involves increasing its renewable capacity four-fold.
September 20, 2021
Australian companies plan to spend AUS$5.1 billion (US$3.7 billion) on offshore gas exploration over the next six years, which is enough to develop 2.5GW of renewables capacity and generate close to 5,000 jobs
September 20, 2021
Mining company Rio Tinto has revealed plans for a new solar project and battery energy storage system that will help to decarbonise an off-grid mine in the Australian state of Queensland.
September 17, 2021
BP, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and Masdar have partnered up to develop low carbon hydrogen hubs and create decarbonised air travel corridors between the UK and UAE in a deal that will see “billions” of dollars of investment.
September 17, 2021
US utility company Dominion Energy Virginia has proposed 15 new energy projects totalling 1GW of power for the state, which Dominion Energy claimed was the largest group of projects to be submitted to the Virginia State Corporation Commission (SCC)
September 16, 2021
Renewables developer Amp Energy has secured financing for a 120MW solar installation in the Australian state of New South Wales that is expected to begin energisation in early 2022.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
October 6, 2021
Solar Media Events
October 19, 2021
BRISTOL, UK
Solar Media Events
December 1, 2021