Melbourne, the second-largest city in Australia, is about to close a tender issue (essentially an RFP) to purchase large volumes of renewable energy through a group purchasing model.
The group wants to purchase 110 GWh worth of energy from new large-scale renewable energy facilities. It says that will save up to 138,600 tons of CO2 each year–the equivalent of planting more than 160,000 new trees, and enough to power 28,475 Melbourne households. The Melbourne Renewable Energy Project (MREP) is a collaboration between Bank Australia, NAB, City of Port Phillip, Australia Post, Citywide, Moreland City Council, NextDC, RMIT University, The University of Melbourne, Zoos Victoria, and the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre. Tenders are due on June 20, 2016, coming to a close two years after MREP’s initial call. MREP says Melbourne’s current renewables mix is
- 9.4% Grid Renewables
- 1.8% Rooftop Solar
- 1.4% GreenPower
Roughly speaking, the group wants to double those combined figures by 2020, when it is looking to generate 25% of its electricity from renewable energy sources. The effort comes on the heels of the recently-released Clean Energy Australia Report 2015from trade association Clean Energy Council. The Council says that renewable energy provided 14.6% of Australia’s electricity in 2015, enough to provide power for the equivalent of approximately 6.7 million average homes. That was up from 13.5% of electricity the year before. Considering that the country aims to increase the total amount of electricity generated from renewables to 33,000 GWh in 2020 from 15,200 GWh in 2015, Australia will have to move beyond such incremental advances. The Council says that between 30 and 50 new large-scale wind and solar projects will need to be built to meet the target. It put the total economic opportunity from the effort to meet Australia’s renewables target at more than $40 billion AUD ($29.5 USD). Ed.: Click the image below to see Australia’s current electricity generation mix by state.