The Victorian Coalition Government has strengthened its commitment to renewable and low emissions technology by increasing funding for the Energy Technology Innovation Strategy (ETIS).
Energy and Resources Minister Michael O'Brien said today that provision had been made in the 2011-12 Victorian Budget to add a further $41 million to ETIS.
"The Low Emission Energy Technology Program effectively doubles funding for renewable energy plants and low emission technology projects, implementing a key election commitment of the Coalition Government," Mr O'Brien said.
"Funding will be focused on energy technologies that are most relevant to Victoria's needs and resources, and on projects that develop a skilled workforce, which is necessary to develop and exploit the full potential of these technologies.
"The program will also allow Victoria to benefit from leveraging existing national and international investment."
Eligible technologies could include solar, biomass, geothermal, wave, smart grid, energy efficiency, fuel cells, small scale hydro, co-generation and tri-generation.
"Given the uncertainty and long lead times for technological development, early investment is essential to meet the Coalition Government's objectives of longer-term security of supply, energy affordability and emissions reduction," Mr O'Brien said.
"Low emission energy technology projects generally have a high technical risk and are either too costly or otherwise unable to compete in the marketplace against current mainstream fossil fuel technologies.
"Innovations in many different fields of application over a period of decades are required to minimise the cost of these new technologies.
"By helping to drive renewable and lower emission energy technology down the cost curve, the ETIS program will help to deliver better environmental outcomes while reducing the impact on household power bills," Mr O'Brien said.