Australia Clean Energy Investment Reached the Peak in 2017

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Statistics from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) shows that “Australia’s clean energy investment took in $9 billion in 2017, up 150% on 2016 and lifted Australia to 7th position in terms of global clean energy investment last year”, which means the clean energy investment had broken the record of $6.2 billion in 2011 and get closer to its energy target. And Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator announced that “Australia will meet its 2020 Renewable Energy Target of 33 GW (gigawatts) of additional renewable energy following 2017’s record level of clean energy investment”. The Regulator believe the investment performance will be better in 2018 and 2019.

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The investment is mainly focused on large-scale wind or solar energy and rooftop installations. The Silverton wind farm with 200MW had started to set up near Broken Hill last year. And the completed renewable projects with over 1000 megawatts had begun to generate power. What’s more, some agencies had found the innovative investment methods for investors. For example, National Australia Bank Limited (NAB) launched Low Carbon Shared Portfolio, the investors “buy into an AUD200 million pool of NAB loans that fund existing renewable energy projects in Australia,” which could not only contribute to the energy conservation, but also help the invertors to make profits.

However, some had also concerned that the renewable future may not be as bright as people imagined. The rise of new energy may lead to unemployment for people who work in traditional power plants. While Ernst and Young even pointed out that “20,000 potential jobs could be forfeited under the NEG and Doctors for the Environment Australia stated it would encourage continued burning of fossil fuels”, which may become the stumbling block of clean energy’s development.

Additionally, the investment growth may slow down after the year of 2020 when the current energy goal is reached. If the climate and energy policy will be helpful to the new energy’s growth is still unknown. And the specific energy target after 2020 is still to be ascertained as well.

Undoubtedly, clean energy will generate more business opportunities, and the clean energy’ development in Australia is deserved to pay close attention to.

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