ENERGY TRANSITION

Analysis: where is Australia with offshore wind power?

It's a long and winding (windy?) road

How long 'til there's turbines in Australian waters?

How long 'til there's turbines in Australian waters?

Today in Melbourne the Australia Wind Energy 2024 exhibition and conference opens, and while by no solely devoted to offshore developments, this new sector is only set to grow in future years.

Over the last few months, announcements have periodically come out from the Federal Government about a new area of the sea ripe for development or having been approved as being ripe for development. Or indeed a consultation to test and judge that all important ripeness.

But precious little's happening in the water itself, which begs the question - in this complicated regulatory, governmental and industry eco-system - where is Australia's offshore wind sector?

 

Support from the corridors of power

Energy minister Chris Bowen is clearly a fan (no pun intended).

Unlocking the offshore wind industry is an exciting new chapter for Australia and we want to build a platform of community collaboration and support around it. 

 

Energy minister Chris Bowen

When he announced the six regions for consideration in 2022 he said: "The world's climate emergency is Australia's regional jobs opportunity and offshore wind is just one example.

"Unlocking the offshore wind industry is an exciting new chapter for Australia and we want to build a platform of community collaboration and support around it. 

"We have some of the best wind resources in the world - just one rotation of one offshore wind turbine provides as much energy as an average rooftop solar installation generates in one day.

"This new industry will provide opportunities to reduce emissions and fast track job and economic development opportunities for regional Australia particularly in clean energy generation and manufacturing. 

"Many other countries have been successfully harvesting offshore wind energy for years, and now is the time for Australia to start the journey to firmly establish this reliable and significant form of renewable energy."


New sector, new jobs

Advocates, including Bowen, say a new offshore wind industry can present an opportunity to boost Australian supply chains, local economies and job prospects.

To date, the government have announced four regions as confirmed suitable for development as an offshore windfarm and two more regions are still under consideration. 

All six regions have the potential to deliver 25,000 ongoing jobs in addition to the construction labour force that would be needed.

For more analysis on where Australia is in its journey to establishing an offshore wind energy sector, click here.

 

 

A growing series of reports, each focused on a key discussion point for the energy sector, brought to you by the Energy News Bulletin Intelligence team.

A growing series of reports, each focused on a key discussion point for the energy sector, brought to you by the Energy News Bulletin Intelligence team.

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