ANU Solar Oration 2023: Generation Change – and the role of solar PV

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Australia’s commitment to net zero emissions by 2050 will see a transformation in our energy system from households to power stations and across the grids that connect them. At the same time, the global commitment to reduce emissions will see a change in Australia’s economy and exports.

In seizing this opportunity, Australia can position itself to continue to be a global player in energy exports - it’s just going to look different. We will see less reliance on shipping unprocessed resources with a growth in opportunity in minerals processing and manufacturing of the hardware that will drive this transition and emerging opportunities in green energy exports based on hydrogen.

Energy generation is changing, with solar moving from 15% of the electricity mix to 60% or more, with the rest predominantly wind. The amount of solar installed in Australia will need to grow ten-fold to 300GW to service our own energy needs, as we electrify everything – and more as we grow our energy export sector to include energy-critical minerals and their processing.

In the 2023 ANU Solar Oration, hear from Professor Renate Egan about the opportunities this presents for Australia and some of the challenges we will need to navigate along the way. Professor Egan is the Executive Director for the Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics, the national centre for photovoltaics research led by UNSW, in partnership with The Australian National University, University of Queensland, CSIRO, University of Melbourne and Monash.

An opening statement on the ACT's progress towards net zero emissions will be delivered by the Minister for Water, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Shane Rattenbury MLA.

The event will be moderated by Professor Andrew Blakers, from the ANU College of Engineering, Computing and Cybernetics.

Please note that this is a hybrid event, with the option to attend in-person at The Australian National University Acton campus or online via Zoom. Light refreshments will be available for in-person participants between 5.30-6pm. The event will commence from 6pm.

Recent orators comprise:

2017: Audrey Zibelman, CEO of Australian Energy Market Operator
2018: Ivor Frischknecht, former CEO of ARENA
2019: Fleur Yaxley, Head of Development, Australia – UPC Renewables
2020: Mark Jacobson, Stanford University
2021: Matt Stocks, ANU and Marta Victoria Aarhus University, Denmark
2022: Drew Clarke AO, Chair of the Australian Energy Market Operator

About the speaker:
Professor Renate Egan is Executive Director of the Australian Centre for Advanced Photovoltaics, the national centre for photovoltaics research led by UNSW, in partnership with ANU, UQ, CSIRO, University of Melbourne, University of Sydney and Monash, funded by ARENA and with the objective to work together on the next generation of photovoltaics. With expertise across industry, manufacturing and small business, government, university and not-for-profits, she is also Deputy Head of School (Engagement) in the School of Solar PV and Renewable Energy Engineering. and Co-Founder of Solar Analytics, Australia's largest independent energy monitoring provider.

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