DURING a visit to the Clare Solar Farm in Ayr, QLD Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced a commitment of more than $150 million to expand renewable energy in the State. “We know there is a renewable energy boom in this State,” Ms Palaszczuk said. “We anticipate there is going to be in the order of $20 billion worth of investment happening in Queensland. “That has the capability of creating more than 15,000 jobs and these jobs are predominantly in regional Queensland.” Ms Palaszczuk said $50 million would go into the construction of a new solar thermal baseload generator, and $97m on installing solar panels at QLD schools. An additional $3.6m would go to helping remote communities reduce their carbon footprint. The move is part of the government’s strategy to reach its goal of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030. Clean Energy Council chief executive Kane Thornton said the renewable energy and storage industry had invested strongly in QLD over the last few years, and a large part of that is due to the supportive environment which had been created for business. “Queensland has led the nation in rooftop solar panels for years, and the many big wind and solar projects which are underway across the state are employing thousands of locals and generating economic opportunities in regional parts of the state,” Mr Thornton said. “Along with the state’s strong renewable energy target of 50 per cent by 2030, the new pledge of $50m for a solar thermal power plant and almost $100m for solar panels in schools will help to accelerate a 21st century energy system for the sunshine state.
“That has the capability of creating more than 15,000 jobs and these jobs are predominantly in regional Queensland.”
“Funding to help remote communities decarbonise is also very welcome, along with investigating the feasibility of a battery mega-factory in North Queensland.”
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk with Energy Minister Mark Bailey and Labor candidate for Burdekin Mike Brunker with some of the 250 workers building the Clare solar farm near Ayr.