REPORT LAUNCH: Cutting-Edge Renewable Energy Report To Spark National Debate About Climate Policy

MELBOURNE – On Tuesday June 22, climate change solutions research group Beyond Zero Emissions will launch the Zero Carbon Australia - Stationary Energy report at the Australian Parliament in Canberra. 

Senators Christine Milne (Greens), Judith Troeth (Liberal), and Nick Xenophon (Independent) will host the launch, and will be joined by:

  • Matthew Wright, Beyond Zero Emissions Executive Director 
  • Professor Mike Sandiford, Melbourne University Energy Institute
  • Tom Long, Australian actor (SeaChange, Two Hands) and Beyond Zero Emissions volunteer. 

The Zero Carbon Australia report provides a detailed blueprint for transitioning Australia’s stationary energy sector to 100% renewable energy sources by 2020. The report shows that Australia can replace fossil fuel baseload electricity using renewable energy technology that is available today, with the additional investment required equal to about one cup of coffee per person per day. 

The Zero Carbon Australia report is the culmination of 12 months of pro bono work by engineers and postgraduate university students, and testament to the quality of the plan, it will be published by the University of Melbourne 's Energy Institute next month. 

The report’s findings blow the arguments for delaying climate action out of the water, and they are certain to spark debate about Australia’s energy present and future.

“In the lead up to the Federal budget last month, a broad coalition of Australians called for the Rudd government to take an ambitious nation-building approach to climate policy. The Zero Carbon Australia 2020 plan is what that approach looks like,” says Matthew Wright, Beyond Zero Emissions Executive Director.

“Australia needs a nation-building climate change project with the scale and vision of a Snowy Mountains Scheme for the 21st Century. This approach can win the hearts and minds of Australians and put us on track to restore a safe climate,” says Matthew Wright.

“It’s time for the Australian parliament to a implement a climate and energy policy agenda to repower our economy with 100% renewable energy by 2020. Concentrated solar thermal technology is capable of generating renewable electricity 24 hours a day and credible climate and energy policy will encourage the rapid deployment of the technology in Australia. This should be a priority for Australian governments,” says Wright. 

“There is a critical need for policies to ensure the construction of large-scale renewable energy projects and climate-friendly infrastructure. These projects are the best way to secure Australia’s energy future and protect the nation from dangerous climate change,” says Wright.

Australian Greens Deputy Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said: “We can and must aim to power Australia with 100% renewable energy as soon as possible if we are to truly tackle the climate crisis. This Zero Carbon Australia plan is an extremely valuable contribution which all in the parliament should be looking at very seriously, particularly as we are currently debating renewable energy legislation in the Senate.”

For further information or comment, contact Matthew Wright, Executive Director of Beyond Zero Emissions