CEFC rolls out first investment under $20 billion Rewiring the Nation fund

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The Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) has confirmed New South Wales (NSW) will receive a $100 million loan under the federal government’s Rewiring the Nation fund to accelerate the delivery of clean energy projects that support the state’s electricity infrastructure roadmap.

The NSW Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap calls for at least 12 GW of additional renewable energy generation backed up by 2 GW of new long-duration storage by 2030, helping to replace capacity lost as the National Electricity Market transitions from predominantly coal-fired power to renewables.

CEFC Chief Executive Officer Ian Learmonth said the investment, the first to be finalised through the $20 billion Rewiring the Nation fund, would underpin investment in regional NSW and pave the way for substantial new flows of clean energy in the state.

“Rebuilding our energy system is a large and complex task, with infrastructure projects requiring considerable capital, expertise and time to bring online,” he said.

“As a specialist financier, we are able to use our capital to support investment flows through to project delivery and revenue generation, providing confidence to the market and private sector investors.”

The Rewiring the Nation fund is a centrepiece of the federal government’s climate change targets, which include 82% of energy in the grid from renewable sources by the end of the decade as part of its legislated target of a 43% reduction in 2005-level emissions by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050.

The CEFC, which has estimated an additional 29 GW of large-scale renewable generation will need to be installed by the end of the decade in order to reach the national renewable energy and emissions goals, has been tasked with assessing potential projects and distributing money to states and territories.

It has already allocated billions to support major transmission projects and infrastructure builds in Western Australia, NSW, Victoria and Tasmania, but this $100 million commitment is the first investment to be finalised.

The CEFC said its investment priorities under the Rewiring the Nation fund include transmission (including Integrated System Plan projects), distribution network (including distributed energy resources) and long-duration storage projects.

“Other opportunities may include projects which reduce emissions and support or strengthen the security, reliability and affordability of Australia’s electricity grids, including demand management projects,” it said.

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