Renewable Energy Workshop Statement

ANU Climate
19 February 2019

During a three day workshop held at ANU recently, experts from a broad range of backgrounds discussed the future of the electricity system. The following statement has been prepared to inform both federal and state policy, in order to deliver an equitable and clean system. The statement complete with a list of signatories can be downloaded here.

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  

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 Renate Egan, Associate Professor, UNSW Sydney and Chair Australian PV Institute Tristan Edis, Director Analysis & Advisory, Green Energy Markets 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