Renewable Energy To Power Our Schools And Hospitals

06 June 2024

The Allan Labor Government is building Victoria’s renewable energy future, investing in proven renewable energy technologies like solar and wind to deliver cheap and reliable power to Victorians.

Premier Jacinta Allan and Minister for Energy and Resources Lily D’Ambrosio today visited Victoria’s newest renewable energy projects at Mortlake and Glenrowan which will soon power our hospitals and schools – cutting our emissions and delivering cheaper power.

The Mortlake South Wind Farm is the final project to come online as part of the Labor Government’s first Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) reverse auction with works on the 158-megawatt wind farm now complete – having created 100 jobs during construction.

The wind turbines will come fully online before the end of the year and will generate enough energy for 115,000 homes.

All projects from the first auction – Berrybank Wind Farm, Dundonnell Wind Farm, Cohuna Solar Farm and Winton Solar Farm are now complete – delivering a total 807 megawatts of cheap renewable energy.

This $1.1 billion investment in regional Victoria created 900 jobs during construction including 270 apprenticeships and traineeships.

The first project from Victoria’s second renewable energy auction also opened today, built over the past year and supporting 125 jobs during construction. Pacific Partnerships’ 102-megawatt Glenrowan Solar Farm will power about 55,000 homes annually.

By 2025 the revived State Electricity Commission (SEC) will begin taking power generated from these projects and supply cheap renewable energy to every public hospital, school, police station and government building.

As the state-owned energy company grows it will also start supplying commercial and industrial customers, helping them slash their bills.

The VRET projects will generate a total of 1.2 gigawatts of energy and help achieve the target for all Victorian Government buildings to be run on 100 per cent renewable electricity by 2025.

Because of this investment in renewables, Victoria has the lowest wholesale energy prices in the national market and from 1 July, the Victorian Default Offer is being cut by $100 – making it more than $300 cheaper than the equivalent offer in other states.

Mortlake South Wind Farm is delivering its own community benefits scheme, which provides funding to neighbours and local businesses through community grants. The windfarm has also set up a scholarship fund for local students seeking to attend university or TAFE to help them purchase laptops, textbooks.

Glenrowan Solar Farm has also established its own benefit sharing fund, and last year they invested $50,000 in local Landcare projects, local preschools and other community facilities.

Victoria is transitioning to 95 per cent renewable energy generation by 2035 while the remaining 5 per cent is gas peaking power.

That’s why the Victorian Government has approved Beach Energy’s plans to produce gas from the offshore Enterprise gas field, on the condition that Beach Energy make best endeavours to sell to domestic customers first.

Last year, renewable energy made up 39 per cent of energy capacity because of the 78 new large-scale projects that have been commissioned to date – delivering 5.34 gigawatts of energy.

Victoria’s strong pipeline of projects and initiatives, including new streamlined approvals pathways, is keeping the state on track to hit its next renewable energy generation target of 40 per cent by 2025.

Quote attributable to Premier Jacinta Allan

“Our renewable energy investment is helping deliver the lowest wholesale energy prices in the market – with our position only growing stronger as more wind and solar farms come online.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Energy and Resources Lily D’Ambrosio

“Renewable energy is the cheapest form of new built generation available right now, and that’s why we’ve invested in it and are streamlining approvals to get more built, more quickly – creating jobs and reducing emissions.”

Quote attributable to Member for Western Victoria Jacinta Ermacora

“Victoria’s south west is a hub for renewable energy generation, and it’s great to see these projects reinvesting back into the local community so locals can enjoy the benefits of the renewable energy transition.”

Quote attributable to Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes

“New renewable energy projects are coming online in northern Victoria - creating jobs, reducing emissions and slashing power bills."

Reviewed 06 June 2024

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