Region on cusp of energy boom
THE North Coast could become one of the state’s renewable energy hot spots under the Federal Government’s huge investment in creating a cleaner energy future for Australia.
The $13 billion investment in the renewable energy sector was announced yesterday as part of the carbon tax scheme.
It included grants to businesses aspiring to be greener, low-income households and the establishment of a new Biodiversity Fund.
The urbanised and overcrowded metropolitan areas in and around Australia’s capital cities are no place for a wind farm, unlike the vacant, greener pastures of the Northern Rivers.
“The reason I think the Northern Rivers will do alright is because you can’t put wind farms or alternative power sources in the city,” retired Southern Cross University economist Lawson Savery said.
“So we have a good opportunity for that and it means more jobs and money for the region.”
Within the allocation for cleaner energy initiatives, included $10 billion to form the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC).
The CEFC will invest in businesses attempting to get clean energy proposals and technologies off and racing.
An Australian Renewable Energy Agency will distribute over $3 billion in grants to research and development of similar initiatives.
Likewise, the Clean Technology Innovation Program will hand out $200 million in grants to support business investment in renewable energy, low emissions technology and energy efficiency.
A program to improve the energy efficiency of council and community buildings and low-income households will almost triple in funding.
The aim of these various agencies, multiple grant programs and repetitive titles is to ensure 20% of Australia’s electricity comes from renewable energy sources by 2020.