Tasmania heads towards 200% renewable energy target

Announcing its vision to implement a number of actions towards improved renewable energy generation, the Tasmanian Government is shifting its focus towards the field for the next two decades. In its outline, they noted that there has never been a more critical time to streamline the move to renewables, especially as the economy looks for ways to recover from COVID-19’s impact.

The state is currently on track to become fully self-sufficient through renewables by the year 2022. This will make it the first state in the country with a generation rate that’s 100% based off of renewables alone. But beyond this, Tasmania is also well-positioned to achieve a double in renewable production by the year 2040, which would significantly contribute to Australia reducing its emissions.

Ambitious goals put Tasmania in the spotlight

Back in March, the island state declared it would head for 200% renewables by 2040. Still, a draft report titled ‘Renewable Energy Action Plan’ now outlines that this benchmark will also put Australia on the forefront of becoming a world leader in “clean, reliable and affordable energy”.

Even globally, this kind of ambitious goal is unheard of and would mean Tasmania increases its output by up to 10,500GWh per year (if current 2022 goals stand correct). A temporary target of 15,750 of GWh has also been placed alongside a 150% objective by 2030.

Minister Barnett said that this shift comes at a crucial part of the year after the country has undergone significant events in the first half of 2020.

“As a result of COVID-19, there are unprecedented challenges facing Australian households and industries,” he said. “By seizing Tasmania’s immense potential, renewable energy can grow our economy, attract investments, create jobs and support Australia’s transition to renewable supply.

“Tasmania aspires to lead the way as a region for new and expanded industrial developments on-shore – where manufacturing, commercial and industrial operations can directly access our low-cost, reliable and clean electricity resources.”


New projects to fill the pipeline

The draft also notes that a new body called Renewables Tasmania will manage, coordinate and help promote the production of renewable energy across the state. It will also be responsible for regulating the sector as a whole and transform it into a globally and nationally recognised ‘brand’.

Projects already lined up include Project Marinus – a 1,500 MW undersea interconnector that will provide renewable sources to Victoria to help stabilise the grid. This falls alongside Battery of the Nation – a hydro storage facility to free up a very overwhelmed pipeline of wind and solar across Victoria.

Several other developments – including an expansion of a wind farm – will see Tasmania further its sector, especially after the state government announced a $50 million investment package for green hydrogen projects.