The Victorian Government has recently announced renewable energy
targets of 25 per cent by 2020 (replacing a target of 20 per cent)
and 40 per cent by 2025. Approximately 14 per cent of
Victoria's electricity is currently obtained from renewable
sources. The newly announced targets are expected to be enshrined
in legislation during 2017.
Victoria's Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate
Change, Lily D'Ambrosio MP, provided more detail on the targets
in an interview with
This announcement follows the introduction of targets by a
number of state and territory governments which exceed the
Commonwealth target of 33,000 GWh (approximately 23.5 per cent) by
2020. The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) has recently committed
to sourcing 100 per cent of its electricity from renewable energy
sources by 2020, while South Australia and Queensland have
committed to targets of 50 per cent by 2025 and 2030
The targets will form part of
Victoria's Renewable Energy Action Plan (Action Plan),
which is due to be released later this year. The Action Plan will
also be influenced by community feedback on Victoria's
Renewable Energy Roadmap, which identified four priority areas:
transforming the wholesale electricity market toward renewable
reducing the barriers to continued development of distributed
generation (solar and small scale wind power) and energy
encouraging household and community development of renewable
energy generation; and
government support for renewable energy development.
Auctions to support investment
An auction scheme, including both technology-neutral and solar
auctions, will be introduced to help Victoria reach these targets.
Successful bidders will win long-term contracts for the electricity
generated by their projects, increasing certainty for investors. A
consultation process will soon commence on the design of the
scheme. The first auctions are expected to be held in 2017 and the
aim of the Government is to have 1,800 MW of new capacity built by
It is likely that the Victorian Government will draw on the
experience of the ACT Government, which has run reverse auctions
50 MW of solar generating capacity in 2013;
200 MW of wind generating capacity in 2014 and 2015; and
109 MW of capacity in 2016 (in a technology-neutral auction
process) which required winning bidders to provide finance for the
installation of battery storage to support solar PV in homes and
Successful projects in the ACT auctions included the Ararat Wind
Farm, the Coonooer Bridge Wind Farm, the Hornsdale Wind Farm and
the Sapphire Wind Farm.
We advised a number of participants in these auctions and would
be happy to discuss our experience, and how this can be applied in
Victoria, with you.
Amendment to Victorian Planning Provisions
Amendment VC130 (Amendment) to the Victorian Planning Provisions
(VPP) has also recently been introduced.
The Amendment alters the VPP and all planning schemes by
removing clause 52.32-8 from clause 52.32 (Wind energy facility).
Previously, clause 52.32-8 exempted applications to amend an
existing wind farm permit under s97I of the Planning and
Environment Act 1987 (Act) from the planning panel process
requirement under s97E of the Act, provided it did not increase the
number of turbines or relocate a turbine close to an existing
The Amendment removed this exemption so that certain
applications to amend a permit must now be subject to a panel
hearing process. Applications must be referred to a planning panel
if an objection to the amendment application is lodged and the
original planning permit was the subject of a call-in by the
Minister for Planning.
We advise a number of clients on the implication of planning
scheme amendments and would be pleased to discuss the Amendment
with you. Please contact a member of our
Energy team for further details.
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