• Australian state Victoria is set to introduce a legislation to enshrine renewable energy targets for the state
  • By 2020, it plans to achieve 25% share of renewables in the total energy mix, and increase it to 40% by 2025
  • The government is set to launch a renewable energy auction of up to 650 MW capacity
  • Two solar power projects of 100 MW and 38 MW capacity were awarded that will power Melbourne’s tram network

Victoria is set to become the first Australian state to enshrine renewable energy targets in the state legislation. The state plans to have 25% share of renewables in its energy mix by 2020, and increase it to 40% by 2025. However, the state hasn’t detailed share of various renewable energy capacities.

The legislation for Victorian Renewable Energy Targets (VRET) will be introduced in the Parliament this week. Victorians can expect their average cost of power to come down by around AU$30 a year for households, AU$2,500 a year for medium businesses and $140,000 a year for large companies with the legislation coming into force.

In March 2017, Victoria announced plans to increase FiT rate to AU$11.3 cents per kWh for small renewable energy sources from July 1, 2017.

More renewable energy means more jobs for Victorians – that’s why we’re setting these ambitious targets and promoting investment in this growing sector,” said Premier Daniel Andrews.

Andrews also announced that his government will launch what will be the largest renewable energy auction in Australia for up to 650 MW capacity. It is targeted to provide enough electricity to 389,000 homes or enough energy to power Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo and the Latrobe Valley combined. He did not mention any timeline for the launch of this auction.

 With this first auction, the state expects investments of up to AU$1.3 billion ($1.03 billion). For the entire capacity to come up, 1,250 construction jobs will be created over two years and 90 ongoing jobs.

 Winners for large scale PV tenders announced

Two solar power projects in the state were awarded as a result of a 138 MW new large scale solar power tender to power Melbourne’s tram network. Bannerton Solar Park near Robinvale in the Sunraysia district is expected to provide 100 MW of solar while Numurkah Solar Farm near Shepparton is likely to generate 38 MW.

 Together these two projects are estimated to bring in an investment of $198 million and generate around 325 jobs in regional Victoria during construction period.