Regional employment and income opportunities provided by renewable energy generation

25 May 2009

This report gives detailed analysis about Australian clean energy jobs.

Renewable energy generation is likely to expand markedly over the next two decades.  The Federal Government is planning to implement the Renewable Energy Target Scheme (RET), which mandates 45,000 GWh of additional renewable energy generation by 2020.  The Government also intends to implement the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS), which will make renewable energy technologies more competitive with traditional fossil fuel sources.  Modelling undertaken for the Federal Treasury indicates that the CPRS will increase the opportunities for renewable generation as permit prices increase over time and conventional fossil fuel generation becomes more expensive.  The Government also recently announced $1.36 billion expenditure on large scale solar generation, with the aim of encouraging 1000 MW of new capacity.

Realisation of this potential will lead to economic opportunities in regional areas where good renewable energy resources are located.  Constructing power stations will lead to employment opportunities as well as income spent on local goods and services.  Operating and maintaining power stations will lead to further employment opportunities.  For some projects, other ongoing income will also be provided which will help bolster local economies.

The Climate Institute has commissioned MMA to provide estimates of the regional benefits of renewable energy generation.  Estimates of direct and indirect employment arising from renewable energy generation.  Estimates of capital expenditure on new renewable generation, and the proportion spent on the local economy are also provided.  Where data is available, other benefits are also discussed.


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