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Kicking off from the last quarter of 2016 Australia has experienced an amazing boom in renewable energy across both rooftop solar and utility-scale projects. Over the space of just five years Australia will have shifted from just 15% of our power from renewable energy (in 2016) to 30% by 2021.
After China’s National Day holiday, demand started picking up at a slow pace, but the anticipated installation rush did not occur as expected, due to land and financing issues, as well as the return of winter. These factors will also delay the timing of more than 6 GW of capacity to the first half of next year. PV InfoLink has thus downwardly revised its estimates for installed capacity in the fourth quarter to 11.3 GW in China and 30 GW globally, bringing this year’s global demand forecast to below 120 GW.
Last week two things happened related to rule changes on losses. The AEMC released a draft determination, rejecting the proposal to move to Average Loss Factors (ALF). They also held a working group for COGATI which proposes dynamic marginal loss factors.
Australia made its first moves to open up its energy industry in the 1990s, when the National Electricity Market (NEM) was first created, and many of the rules and regulations from back then are still in place today. But the rise of renewables in the 21st century, argues Clean Energy Investor Group Chair Rob Grant, necessitates a rethink of this market structure.
Utility-scale solar is booming in Australia. Quality assurance, especially solar panel testing, helps achieve better performance and lower costs. Best-practice testing is key, writes Michelle McCann, managing partner at PV Lab Australia, but must be planned and fully integrated into a project from an early stage. This integration ensures flow-through from panel manufacturers to commercial buyers and large project owners.
Renown think-tank Beyond Zero Emissions has published a new report looking directly at the near-future for fossil-fuel industry dependent towns and communities like Collie in WA. The report suggests that Collie has great hope for renewal, a hope founding on the state’s rapid transition to renewable energies.
Abu Dhabi-based renewable energy group Masdar is sailing into the southeast Asian market with its, and Indonesia’s, first floating solar power plant. The project is to be the largest of its kind in South East Asia.
The final tally was 2.13 GW of sub-100kW systems registered in 2019 following a record installation surge in December, according to solar analyst SunWiz. This represents a jump of a 35% year-on-year and puts the grand total at 10 GW.
Spanish utility Iberdrola is investing $500 million in a massive hybrid renewable energy project in South Australia. The funding will pave the way for the landmark project developed by DP Energy to proceed following a significant delay.
A team at the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory has come up with a new process that would reduce the production cost of highly expensive – and highly efficient – gallium arsenide cells.
The Australian peer-to-peer (P2P) energy trading pioneer has purchased a 250kW PV system that will utilize the company’s new energy data management and settlement system to provide greater visibility on renewable energy sold to a consumer under a 20-year power purchase agreement.
Australia’s green bank has partnered with Bank of Australia to deliver discounted interest rates to green home builders and buyers. The green home loan is the first Australian financial instrument to use energy efficiency measurement tools to determine eligibility.
South Australia’s largest water and sewerage services supplier is planning to invest more than $300 million in solar and energy storage during the course of this year as it moves closer to its ambitious goal of achieving a zero cost energy future.
Esperance has a new green deal for the supply of its electricity until 2042. The agreement, which commences in 2022, seeks to cut carbon emissions and features a new a battery storage system and renewables hub complete with solar farm.
Queensland’s first community-scale battery is nearing completion after the delivery of its 4 MW Tesla battery. The battery, to be charged with excess solar power from Townsville’s residential rooftop PV, should connect to the grid by the end of the summer.
University of Sydney researchers have found evidence of how hydrogen causes embrittlement of steels, the discovery that can potentially pave the way to hydrogen-fueled future. The groundbreaking research also reveled a technique to address this challenge.
The WA Government has allocated funding from its Renewable Hydrogen Fund toward seven feasibility studies that could pave the way for significant renewable hydrogen projects around the state.
Researchers at Sydney’s Macquarie University have developed a multi-functional device that can be easily installed in any EV to alleviate energy anxiety in the vehicle and the household. The Intelligent Charger could be the necessary bridge in the transition to EVs.
Australia’s bushfire crisis is beginning to expose a National Energy Market over-reliant on vulnerable individual elements. Does Australia’s changing environment necessitate a localised energy future?
Scientists at Monash University claim to have developed the world’s most efficient lithium-sulfur battery. They say the new device could enable an electric vehicle to drive more than 1,000km on a single charge.
Unnamed Queensland and Victoria solar businesses have been ordered to pay hefty fines, after being caught misclassifying solar mounting kits imported from China. Earlier this year, the Australian Border Force announced it was tightening screws on the dumping of aluminium extrusions, mostly used to mount solar panels.
The PV manufacturer announced the development of the new solar panels, which feature new M12 series monocrystalline wafers, at a conference on Thursday in the Chinese city of Ningbo. The 50-cell modules are actually slightly bigger than 72-cell designs with 156.75 mm wafers, it said.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has announced $15 million in research funding to investigate the end-of-life issues for solar PV panels. Ultimately it is hoped the research increases solar PV efficiency and lowers the cost.
The Shaanxi-based solar manufacturer has made its 14th announcement this year of an intent to expand its ingot, wafer, cell and module output. Thus far – and we’re still three weeks short of year-end – the bill for the 112 GW of extra production spelled out in 2019 comes to a near $4.2 billion.
The first commercial shipment of China-made Soluna batteries has reached the Australian shores. The new battery brand will be sold locally by a joint venture between Lithium Australia and China’s DLG Group.
Solar and battery optimization technology provider Evergen and solar battery provider Solar Service Group have joined forces to connect thousands of residential batteries across Australia. By delivering significant benefits to consumers, the joint venture hopes to boost the uptake home batteries nation-wide.
A microgrid installed on an apartment block in Melbourne will provide clean and affordable electricity to 52 low-income households. It is the first site of Ovida’s Community Energy Hubs project, which will deliver shared solar PV and batteries to more multi-tenanted buildings in the city.
Sydney-based developer Genex Power Limited (Genex) has fought its way back from several unlucky blows to achieve financial close for the 50MW Jemalong Solar Project and the refinancing of the 50 MW Kidston Solar One Project.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is set to fund Australian energy technology company Wattwatchers to the tune of $2.7 million. The funding will aid the development of a consumer-facing energy data hub, ‘My Energy Marketplace,’ another step forward in consumer energy empowerment.
Australian retail property major Vicinity Centres has delivered two solar carparks at its shopping centers in South Australia, one of which is the nation’s biggest at 3.2 MW. One of the centers also has a solar battery trial underway and both will have EV charging stations as of next year.
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