Welcome to Energy Matters’ guide to Australia’s peak bodies representing, funding and regulating the renewable energy industry. Here you can find links to renewable energy organisations contributing to Australia’s clean energy future. Here is our list of the premier renewable energy organisations in the country.
Australian Energy Regulator
The Australian Energy Regulator makes decisions that promote efficient investment in, and efficient operation and use of, energy services for the long-term interests of energy consumers. Its functions include:
- Monitoring wholesale electricity and gas markets to ensure energy businesses comply with the legislation and rules, and taking enforcement action where necessary
- Setting the amount of revenue that network businesses can recover from customers for using networks (electricity poles and wires and gas pipelines) that transport energy;
- Regulating retail energy markets in Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia, Tasmania (electricity only) and the ACT.
See the web site of the Australian Energy Regulator at www.aer.gov.au
Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) funds innovation and shares knowledge about renewables, accelerating Australia’s shift to a renewable energy future.
Because of ARENA-funded projects, national large scale solar is on the cusp of cost parity with wind power – at least five years earlier than expected. ARENA has helped generate 231 megawatts of electricity through its support for four solar farms, enough to power a city the size of Newcastle. Its projects have helped to break at least 11 solar cell efficiency world records, including a record for sunlight-to-electricity conversion efficiency using unfocused sunlight.
See the web site of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency at arena.gov.au
Clean Energy Council
The Clean Energy Council is the peak body for the clean energy industry in Australia, and is the leading one of all the private renewable energy organisations.
Its primary role is to develop and advocate effective policy to accelerate the development and deployment of all clean energy technologies.
The CEC also stands up for the clean energy sector. It works with local, state and federal governments to solve the technical, political and financial challenges faced by the industry.
It delivers a wide range of services to its members, installers, retailers and the broader clean energy industry with the aim of growing the clean energy sector in the interests of all Australians.
The CEC also maintains a list of Clean Energy Council Approved Retailers, of which Energy Matters is a member. These companies have demonstrated their commitment to industry best practice by signing the Solar Retailer Code of Conduct.
Australian Solar Council
The Australian Solar Council is the peak industry body for the solar industry in Australia.
It represents companies in solar hot water, large-scale solar thermal concentrating plants, solar PV (at all scales), solar passive design and energy-efficient materials.
It also claims to represent solar customers and consumers, and provide expert advice to governments and the public.
Seeming to have remarkable pioneer status, it claims to trace its history back to 1954 in Australia.
See the web site of the Australian Solar Council at https://www.solar.org.au
Australian Energy Storage Council
The Australian Energy Storage Council seeks to advance the uptake and development of energy storage solutions in Australia.
The Australian Energy Storage Council represents companies including technology manufacturers, equipment providers, project developers, consultants, utilities and other energy industry leaders, such as renewable energy organisations.
See the web site of the Australian Energy Storage Council at http://www.energystorage.org.au
Solar Energy Industries Association
The Solar Energy Industries Association was formed in 2007 in response to demand from within the industry.
Its members include installers who feel they wanted to be unified and represented under one banner with their interests at heart. Manufacturers and importers of panels, inverters and batteries are also represented. Retailers, researchers and lobbyists are also part of this union of like-minded professionals reflecting the solar industry.
See the web site of the Solar Energy Industries Association at http://seia.org.au/
Australian PV Institute
The Australian Photovoltaic Institute comprises companies, agencies, individuals and academics with an interest in solar energy research, technology and policies. Its objective is to support the increased development and use of PV via research, analysis and information.
The PV Institute aims to be apolitical and of use not only to its members but also to the general community. It focuses on data analysis, independent and balanced information, and collaborative research, both nationally and internationally. In addition to Australian activities, it provides the structure through which Australia participates in two International Energy Agency programs. One is PVPS (Photovoltaic Power Systems), made up of a number of activities concerning various aspects of PV. The other is SHC (Solar Heating and Cooling), concerned with new solar thermal products and services.
The Climate Council supplies independent, authoritative climate change information to the Australian public in the belief that Australians deserve to have independent information on the state of their climate.
Its councillors include Professor Tim Flannery, one of Australia’s leading experts on climate change.
Formerly a Government body, the Climate Commission, it was abolished by the Abbott administration. After thousands of Australians chipped in to Australia’s biggest crowd-funding campaign, it has relaunched as the new, independent Climate Council and as such is recognized as one of the leading renewable energy organisations.
See the web site of the Climate Council at https://www.climatecouncil.org.au/
Climate Change Authority
The Climate Change Authority provides expert advice on Australian Government climate change mitigation initiatives.
The Authority plays an important role in the governance of Australia’s mitigation policies. It undertakes reviews and makes recommendations on the Carbon Farming Initiative and the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting System. Reviews are undertaken on other matters as requested by the Minister responsible for climate change or the Federal Government.
The Authority also conducts and commissions its own independent research and analyses. All reviews include public consultation and all reports are published on the Authority’s web site.
See the web site of the Climate Change Authority at www.climatechangeauthority.gov.au/
Electric Vehicle Council
This new body (launched May 2017) represents members involved in producing, poweringand supporting electric vehicles.
Its mission is “to accelerate the electrification of road transport for a more sustainable and prosperous Australia”.
It also monitors emissions standards and regulations that encourage manufacturers to import electric vehicles to the Australian market – and encourages industry and consumer to purchase them.
It is targeting the following things to facilitate electric vehicle take-up in Australia:
- Affordable vehicles
- Clear regulatory framework
- Model choice
- Consumer awareness
Australian Solar Thermal Energy Association (AUSTELA)
Australian Solar Thermal Energy Association or AUSTELA works with other renewable energy organisations to improve investment in solar thermal power generation in Australia.
Its objective is presenting well-informed insights to policy makers and investment decision makers on the economic and operational benefits of large-scale solar thermal power generation.
It also works to improve confidence in solar thermal power technologies, drawing on international data and experience.
See the web site of the Australian Solar Thermal Energy Association at http://www.austela.com/