Renewable energy could have a major impact on Western AustraliaFebruary 21, 2013
Greens introduce new plans for renewable energy
There are big plans for renewable energy underway in Western Australia. The country’s Greens Party has introduced a new initiative to achieve complete energy sustainability in Western Australia that could easily impact the energy structure of the rest of the country. The political party has released a document suggesting that all of Western Australia’s stationary power needs can be met through the adoption of renewable energy, in less than 20 years.
State could reach 100% energy sustainability through solar and wind
Western Australia is one of the largest energy consumers in the world. The state relies heavily on fossil-fuels, such as coal, but has been working to adopt renewable energy in recent years. According to the Greens, the state can meet its energy needs in a variety of ways that do not involve the use of fossil-fuels. The document released by the Greens highlights solar thermal and storage technologies as an adequate way for the South West Interconnected System. Western Australia’s expansive energy utility, to break away from fossil-fuels. Another option is to use photovoltaic solar energy systems and wind energy.
Costs of renewable energy considered viable
The cost for solar and wind energy has dropped significantly over the past two years. The Greens suggest that no major advances in technology are required for Western Australia to reap the economic benefits of adopting renewable energy. According to the political party, renewable energy in the region can range from $208 to $221 per megawatt-hour. This estimation represents a $60 billion upfront cost for the state to expand its use of solar and wind energy. The cost may be high, but the Greens suggest that it is significantly lower than the costs associated with a continued focus on fossil-fuels.
Politics likely to dictate future of renewable power
As Australia’s smallest political party, the Greens have limited influence over the adoption of renewable energy throughout the country. This is particularly problematic because renewable energy is often made into a political issue rather than one of sustainability or economics. The Greens study of renewable energy and its potential to help Western Australia reach 100% energy sustainability has, nonetheless, generated a fair amount of hype in the political space.