Boost to local renewable energy in Qld a win for renters and environment

Conservationists welcome today’s announcement that Townsville has been selected as the second Local Renewable Energy Zone, with a substantial $40 million investment to help Townsville lead Queensland in both emissions reduction and cost savings.

The Queensland Government funding aims to unlock the renewable potential of households and communities through batteries, solar and other technologies, to reduce energy bills and slash emissions, addressing both climate change and the rising cost of living.

Queensland Conservation Council and North Queensland Environment Council welcome the move for community driven renewable energy and climate action.

Queensland Conservation Council, Energy Strategist, Clare Silcock says

We welcome today’s announcement by the Queensland Government as a crucial step towards achieving Queensland's emission reduction targets. Queensland communities have a huge opportunity to reduce emissions, help meet our renewable energy targets and save money, and this investment will help show how this can happen.

Through the Power Together Coalition we’ve been calling for more support to make the benefits of small-scale renewable energy available to everyone, including renters and low income households. We know from other states like South Australia that technology such as virtual power plants brings long term bill relief and reduces emissions.

We need to be building all scales of renewable energy to end our reliance on polluting fossil fuels, and we look forward to local renewable energy zones being rolled out more broadly to benefit Queenslanders across the state.

North Queensland Conservation Council, Coordinator, Crystal Falknau said

As Queensland transitions away from coal, North Queensland’s exceptional wind and solar resources will play a critical role in powering our future while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fighting climate change.

Selecting appropriate sites for new wind, solar, battery storage and transmission developments has presented challenges in our region, with real concerns for threatened species habitat and resistance from some local communities.

We know that renewables are our most viable clean energy option. The challenge is siting renewable energy projects where they will provide the highest benefit to communities and the lowest impacts on nature.

Renewable energy zones provide an important framework to help guide future development in a way that is strategic, cost-effective and environmentally sound. With so much potential in North Queensland’s wind and solar resources, it is exciting to see this announcement for real investment in our region.