Australia has been warned it must act swiftly to capture the economic and strategic opportunities of a booming battery industries sector that is predicted could provide $55.2 billion (USD 36.87 billion) in additional gross domestic product to the economy by the end of the decade.
Canadian investment giant Brookfield will acquire the remaining 50% stake in Spain-based renewables developer X-Elio from its joint venture partner, investment firm KKR. X-Elio has more than 500 MW of projects in development in Australia and the move from Brookfield, which is also currently looking to takeover Origin Energy, a major Australian “gentailer,” extends the ambitious company’s hold in Australia.
New investment in solar and wind hit a record 7.1 GW in Australia in 2022, with the Clean Energy Regulator reporting a 50% increase in large-scale projects reaching final investment decision compared to 2021. In total, 5.3 GW of new renewable energy capacity was added to the grid in 2022, according to the Regulator’s State of Renewables report.
The European Commission says it will set up the new European Hydrogen Bank by the end of this year, with additional plans to hand out 10-year contracts in a new hydrogen auction. Meanwhile, Fortescue Future Industries is setting up a project in Kenya.
The sale of renewable energy developer Sun Cable, which is aiming to deliver the world’s biggest intercontinental solar and storage project in northern Australia, has received initial takeover offers from multiple investors, including prospective buyers that aren’t existing shareholders in the project.
The Victorian government will make almost $1 million (USD 670,000) in clean energy grants available to traditional owner corporations to deliver renewable energy projects – including solar generation facilities – that will provide economic and social benefits for Aboriginal communities throughout the state.
TrendForce says polysilicon will be 3.2% cheaper in March than in February. This will lead to lower wafer, cell and module prices and will effectively spur installation demand.
Investment in financially committed large-scale renewable energy generation and storage projects in Australia ramped up in the final three months of 2022 to its highest level in more than four years but the Clean Energy Council has warned the pace remains inadequate.
As the cost of living soars, many Australian households are turning to rooftop solar to cut their energy costs. A Pulse of the Nation survey last month showed about 29% of Australians have installed or are considering installing solar panels on their homes. The same survey shows one in five Australians can’t afford to adequately heat or cool their homes.
The Bendigo Bank has reported a massive 600% spike in customers accessing green loans in the last year. The news comes just after the federal government’s green bank paired up with the Commonwealth Bank to begin offering builders and renovators working to high energy efficiency standards reduced rates on their home loans.
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