The Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) has welcomed today’s announcement by the Palaszczuk Government of $145 million for Renewable Energy Zones in north, central and south-west Queensland.
“Renewable Energy Zones are an excellent way to facilitate cheap, clean, reliable 24/7 electricity into the grid,” said ACF campaigner Jason Lyddieth.
“Renewable Energy Zones protect existing jobs and create the jobs of the future through the construction of new wind and solar projects, batteries and transmission lines. They power emerging industries like green aluminium, steel and hydrogen produced with clean energy.
“The announcement of a Renewable Energy Zone for central Queensland is especially welcome. Home to coal-fired power stations and a hub for heavy industry, Gladstone can make the transition to a low emissions future.
“Queensland can recover, rebuild and renew from the economic downturn by becoming a leader in climate action and renewable energy.
“Other states are forging ahead with renewables. South Australia is shooting for 100%. Tasmania has ambitions for 200%, with plans to export clean energy to the rest of Australia. Queensland needs to get big and bold to keep up.
“This announcement is a significant step in the right direction, but stronger targets are needed to reach our full potential.
“The Palaszczuk Government still doesn’t have the policies to deliver on its targets of 50% renewable energy by 2030 or net zero emissions by 2050.
“These targets are critical for Queensland to credibly tackle climate change, but they are only as strong as the policies to deliver them.
“Meanwhile the LNP has ruled out supporting the Queensland Renewable Energy Target and is yet to announce credible climate and energy policies.
“In the lead up to the October 31 state poll, Queenslanders will be weighing up which party has the strongest climate and energy policies to protect the Great Barrier Reef, the agricultural sector and their communities from the worst impacts of climate change.”