23 November 2018

Repower Monaro brings together community for renewables

Repower Monaro hosted an inspiring evening to a packed-out audience at the Tigers Club on Wednesday 21 November with climate expert speakers Prof Andrew Blakers, Dr John Hewson, former Liberal Party leader, and Repower Monaro volunteer Jenny Goldie.

Prof Blakers, who is director of the Australian National University Centre for Sustainable Energy Systems, is optimistic about the prospects for renewable energy.

“Australia is likely to install 15 GW of wind and solar PV over 2018-20. If continued post-2020, this rate would place Australia on track to reach 50 per cent renewable electricity in 2025 and thereby meet the Paris greenhouse targets five years early,” Prof Blakers said.

“The requirements for supporting 50 to 100 per cent renewable electricity are straightforward –stronger interstate interconnection to smooth out local weather plus large-scale storage in the form of pumped hydro and batteries. The Monaro is blessed with extensive wind and hydro opportunities, and reasonable sunshine.”

Dr Hewson, a professor at the ANU Crawford School of Public Policy, said individuals, businesses and communities were moving on rapidly in the transition to renewables, leaving our politicians far behind.

“The Morrison government continues to stick its head in the sand, even after their drubbing on the climate challenge in the recent Wentworth by-election,” he said.

“They continue to ignore the growing majority support for decisive, government-led action on climate change in many, many polls and surveys of electoral opinion, with the most recent evidence suggesting some 80 per cent of voters now want more reliance on renewables and less on fossil fuel fired power.

“This is an issue of such importance you've got to find every mechanism so you can register your concern, and I think everything from doorknocking to marching in the streets is a way to get there.”

Jenny Goldie, president of Climate Action Monaro and committee member of Repower-Monaro, a new organisation that seeks to have all candidates in the state seat of Monaro adopt strong policies on renewables at the state election in March.

“We are in a climate emergency,” she says. “If we are to stay within 1.5oC warming, society will have to make huge, transformative changes. Coal, gas and oil will all need to be phased out.

“I’m appalled at the way coal is destroying our planet through climate change. Leaving coal in the ground and rapidly adopting renewables is the only way we can get out of the mess we’re in.”

Tags

Air pollutionClimate and energyCoal and gas

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