What is renewable energy?
Renewable energy is energy which can be obtained from natural resources that can be constantly replenished.
Renewable energy technologies include technologies that use—or enable the use of—one or more renewable energy sources. Types of renewable energy technologies include:
Renewable energy technologies also include those technologies that are related to renewable energy. For example technologies that:
- store energy generated using renewable energy
- predict renewable energy supply
- assist in the delivery of energy generated using renewable energy technologies to energy consumers.
Why is renewable energy important for Australia?
Renewable energy is essential to Australia’s future economic growth and prosperity, providing for future jobs and helping to lower Australia’s greenhouse emissions.
Australia’s future energy supply will need to have lower greenhouse gas emissions in order to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
How is the government supporting renewable energy in Australia?
The government is supporting Australia’s clean energy future and the development and deployment of clean energy technologies through the introduction of the Clean Energy Future Package. This package includes:
- a carbon price and complementary measures—including the Australian Renewable Energy Agency
- the Renewable Energy Target (RET)
- the Clean Energy Finance Corporation
- the Clean Technology Innovation Program.
The RET scheme is designed to deliver on the Australian Government’s commitment to ensure that the equivalent of at least 20 per cent of Australia’s electricity comes from renewable sources by 2020. The RET expands on the previous Mandatory Renewable Energy Target (MRET), which began in 2001. From 1 January 2011, the RET has operated as two parts:
- Large-scale Renewable Energy Target (LRET), and
- Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES).
The LRET encourages the deployment of large-scale renewable energy projects such as wind farms, while the SRES supports the installation of small-scale systems, including solar panels and solar water heaters.