Renewables workshop statement

Over the fold, the statement agreed to by a large group of participants at the renewable energy workshop I attended at ANU last week.

Coverage in The Guardian and RenewEconomy .

Electricity transmission, storage and market reform required now to achieve emissions targets

50 energy experts gathered for a three day symposium at the Australian National University last week to discuss the latest research on the role of renewable energy in Australia’s low-carbon transition.

The group found that renewable energy is central to our efforts to mitigate climate change. In recent times the Australian energy sector has deployed solar and wind power at unprecedented rates. But there are emerging bottlenecks, and the present market settings do not deliver for consumers.

While action is also required in other sectors of the economy to achieve deep emissions cuts, a sustained shift from fossil fuels to solar and wind power is absolutely necessary for Australia to meet and surpass our 2030 emissions target.

To maintain this rapid pace of renewable energy deployment, Australia urgently needs:

  • additional electricity transmission
  • additional energy storage and demand response mechanisms
  • electricity market reform
  • a solid electricity infrastructure investment framework.

The shift to 100% renewables will be accompanied by the inevitable phasing out of existing coal power plants. Achieving a smooth transition will require careful attention to coal power workers, their communities and energy consumers.

To meet Australia’s emissions targets it is imperative that federal and state governments address emerging infrastructure bottlenecks, embark on market reform and improve the investment framework.

The symposium was attended by experts on energy generation, storage, transmission, economics, markets, regulation and policy and included representatives from universities, research institutes, civil society and government agencies.

Canberra, 19 February 2019

(List of signatories)

Armin Aberle, CEO and Professor at the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Emma Aisbett, Fellow, School of Regulation and Global Governance, Australian National University

Ken Baldwin, Director, Energy Change Institute, Australian National University

Lachlan Blackhall, Entrepreneurial Fellow and Head, Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program, The Australian National University

Andrew Blakers, Professor of Engineering at the Australian National University

Steve Blume, President, Smart Energy Council

Andrew Bray, Australian Wind Alliance

Anna Bruce, Senior Lecturer, UNSW Sydney

Mary A. Cameron, Stanford University Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering

Kylie Catchpole, Professor of Engineering at the Australian National University

Cheng Cheng, PhD student, Australian National University

Richard Corkish, COO, Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics, UNSW

Roger Dargaville, Senior Lecturer, Monash University

Andrew Dickson, Project Manager – Asian Renewable Energy Hub, CWP Renewables

Mark Diesendorf, Honorary Associate Professor, UNSW Sydney

Tristan Edis, Director Analysis & Advisory, Green Energy Markets

Renate Egan, Associate Professor, UNSW Sydney and Chair Australian PV Institute

Martin Green, Scientia Professor, UNSW Sydney

Navid Haghdadi, Postdoctoral researcher, UNSW Sydney

Suzanne Harter, Climate and Clean Energy Campaigner, ACF

Simon Holmes à Court, Senior Advisor, Climate and Energy College, Melbourne University

Nicky Ison, Research Associate, UTS and Founding Director, Community Power Agency

Frank Jotzo, Professor at Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU

Ariel Liebman, Associate Professor, Monash University and Director, Grid Innovation Hub

Eytan Lenko, Director, Beyond Zero Emissions

David Leitch, Principal, ITK Services

Bin Lu, Research Fellow, Australian National University

Iain MacGill, Associate Professor, Centre for Energy and Environmental Markets, UNSW Sydney

Dylan McConnell, Climate & Energy College, University of Melbourne

Tom Morris, Senior Research Consultant, Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS

Bruce Mountain, Associate Professor, Victoria University and Director of the Victoria Energy Policy Centre

Simon Nicholas, Energy Finance Analyst, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis

Pao-Yu Oei, Head of Research Group CoalExit, TU Berlin and DIW Berlin

David Osmond, Senior Wind Engineer, Windlab

Rob Passey, Postdoctoral Fellow, UNSW Sydney

John Quiggin, Professor, University of Queensland

Thomas Reindl, Deputy CEO and Principal Research Fellow at the Solar Energy Research Institute of Singapore, National University of Singapore, Singapore

Hugh Saddler, Honorary Associate Professor, ANU

Ronald A. Sinton, President and Senior Scientist, Sinton Instruments, Boulder CO USA

Igor Skryabin, Research and Business Dev Manager, ANU Energy Change Institute

Nathan Steggel, Technical Director, Windlab

Matthew Stocks, Research Fellow, Research School of Electrical, Energy and Materials Engineering, ANU

Matthias Vetter, Head of Department Electrical Energy Storage, Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE, Freiburg, Germany

Gregory Wilson, Principal, G. M. Wilson Consulting, Denver, Colorado USA

Oliver Yates, Investor

8 thoughts on “Renewables workshop statement

  1. This is only indirectly related, but The Guardian is reporting that the Queensland Resources Investment Commissioner is saying that the Adani coalmine could be delayed for another two years. News Ltd sources (behind paywalls) are quoting the Commissioner as saying the approvals process is “an absolute mess”.

  2. Reuters New Delhi is taking a different line, saying that Adani could obtain approval “within two years, despite opposition”. Apologies for posting this on the renewables workshop thread.

  3. The statement is unexceptionable, but it is too reasonable and technocratic in style to have the impact it deserves. It illustrates why mobilisation needs simple slogans and comprehensible targets. Agree or not with the Green New Deal, it does offer these.

  4. As seen in some news, James W…

    [Ed. Punchier please… socialisn via Green New Deal ? ]

    Unless emissions targets removed now, they will deform market for Electricity transmission and storage 

    The Australian National University, who rejected western civilisation funding, gathered an elite group to discuss the latest research on transitioning away from  coal. Modelling by A Farmer shows increasing prices due to renewable energy deforming Australia’s electricity market.””

    Although tounge in cheek, truth is always fiction in the news.

  5. James Wimberley says: “The statement is unexceptionable, but it is too reasonable and technocratic in style to have the impact it deserves.”

    I entirely agree James. My crappy alternative above was a poor ad hom -as they do – on news.

    So here is a relevant juxtaposition to show fear vs “too reasonable and technocratic”.

    Fear & slogan example;

    “Time to Panic
    The planet is getting warmer in catastrophic ways. And fear may be the only thing that saves us.”

    No fear or slogans in this block of accurate yet jargon laden VERY IMPORTANT text below by the ipcc? I’d estimate only interested very literate and numerate humans get it. A small set of the necessary required minds needed to change habits to avoid this Doomsday Senario, as it it being called in the msm.

    “An IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5 °C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty.”
    https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/

    We need another Doomday Clock! And a punchy one liner;
    “This article is about the symbol of global catastrophe.”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doomsday_Clock

  6. Market dominance in the energy retailing market is still too great. The monopolistic competitive firms selling electricity into Australia’s retail market sometimes use price gouging. Only the advancement of alternative energy supplies can affect these abuses of market power.

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