Queensland is in the midst of a renewable energy investment boom with 3000 jobs created through a large number of renewable energy projects currently under way in the state.
Speaking to 200 delegates at the Australian Solar Council’s Powering Queensland Summit in Brisbane, Minister for Energy, Mark Bailey, said Queensland was in the midst of a renewable energy investment boom.
“No other state has more renewable projects under development than Queensland,” Mr Bailey said.
Mr Bailey said there are 18 large-scale renewable energy projects under construction that had created 3000 jobs in the state, with a further four projects starting work soon.
“We expect these projects will boost investment by $3.7 billion and employ almost 3,000 workers during the construction phase – the great majority in regional centres.
“They will provide a more diversified mix of energy for Queensland, increasing the percentage of energy generated by renewables in Queensland to almost 17 per cent – more than doubling our current generation.”
Mr Bailey said rooftop solar had been the driving force behind Queensland’s renewable energy industry over the past decade with a nation-leading 30 per cent of homes having solar systems installed.
“We’ve turned the Sunshine State into the Solar State,” Mr Bailey said.
“We currently have around 1800MW of solar installed across 464,000 rooftops in Queensland – combined, they are now the state’s largest power station, surpassing the 1,680MW Gladstone Power Station.
Mr Bailey also said the Queensland Government is investing $21 million to improve access to solar panels and household storage batteries.
“Solar panels and batteries are a great way for households and small businesses to cut their electricity bills, but for some the upfront cost can be a challenge,” Mr Bailey said.
“We will be offering no-interest loans to help those Queenslanders who don’t have access to the upfront capital required to invest in solar and battery to help reduce their bills and be part of a clean energy future.
Mr Bailey said the scheme would allow up to 20,000 households and small businesses the ability to directly take control of their own electricity consumption and address electricity affordability – with batteries extending the benefits of solar to households and businesses.
“This is also supporting the battery manufacturing industry here in Queensland – with local success stories like Redback Technologies, Redflow and Century Batteries, right here in our backyard, supporting jobs and growth.”