In short, without changing the size of our homes, or our cars, or fundamentally changing the fabric of our lives, these discounts mean that a fully electrified energy economy using non-carbon fuel sources would require less than half of the total amount of energy we use today.
Natural gas is at times described as a transition fuel in the response to the climate crisis as it has about half the carbon dioxide emissions of black coal when burned to generate electricity. That argument has been rejected by the head of the International Energy Agency and science bodies warning the world needs to rapidly move to clean energy and industries.
In a statement on Wednesday, Westpac said the deal would deliver a 45 per cent transition to renewables by 2021 for the bank globally, as well as providing greater cost certainty on its electricity spend.
The implications for the likes of AGL, Origin, EnergyAustralia and the government-owned Snowy Hydro, are significant, and they will no doubt increase their efforts to keep the networks out of what they see as their traditional business.
The dramatic shift by Norway's biggest party is a significant blow to the support the oil industry has enjoyed, and could signal that the Scandinavian nation is coming closer to the end of an era that made it one of the world's most affluent.
“the amount of renewable energy capacity committed in Australia during 2018 increased 260% on 2017, with 14.8 GW underway in 2018 compared to 5.6 GW in 2017”
With the speed and magnitude of these changes evolving rapidly, we’ve identified eight potential shifts that could further accelerate the energy transition. Although these eight shifts may not represent the most probable future, they should be considered conceivable based on the developments that can be observed today.
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The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has today announced it will help build Australia’s first Business Renewables Centre to encourage Australian businesses to make the switch to renewable energy.
“The Business Renewables Centre will help in that transition by using its expertise in running programs, entrepreneurship, innovation, education and other sustainability objectives to make it easier for companies and councils to enter the renewables market.”
In a salutary indicator of how our politicians have created a vacuum in climate change policy, the Business Council of Australia feels it must provide leadership.
"The nation's energy companies and biggest electricity users have given up on politics and begun backroom talks about a self-regulated package of measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, restore energy reliability and improve investor stability.”
“We have to build power stations. There’s nothing in the [Paris] agreement that would stop us building power stations, including coal-fired power stations,” Canavan said.
"But here’s the thing: South Australia’s renewable share has likely proved the opposite to what’s being claimed. Since the events of the summer of 2016/17, there have been no major outages. In fact, it’s quite possibly been the most reliable grid in the country."
“Is this intermittent?” Summers asks. “No. They (wind and solar) are doing the job of baseload while the actual baseload band (the synchronous generation) is misbehaving.” Summers noted that the legal framework had made this type of behaviour acceptable.
"The amount of coal power capacity in pre-construction stages has declined every year since 2015."
The consumer watchdog believes Australians are paying too much for their electricity. A lack of competition in the energy market and policy mistakes by successive state and federal governments has added significant costs to power bills, according to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
"We've got a lot of costs imposed into the system, the market's too concentrated and we've had some unfortunate behaviour by retailers."
Swiss Re, the world's second largest reinsurer, has pulled the plug on underwriting policies for companies with more than 30 per cent of thermal coal in their mining or power-generation portfolios, further tightening the screws on a fuel which is paradoxically enjoying buoyant demand in Asia