Energy emissions audit reveals power of renewables

Coopers Gap, emissions
Image: PARF

The first National Energy Emissions Audit of 2019 shows renewable energy displacing black coal power generation for the first time, as part of the largest ever year-on-year growth in renewables generation the NEM has seen.

The Australia Institute Climate & Energy Program has released the latest National Energy Emissions Audit covering emissions in the electricity sector for the previous month.

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Key findings include:

  • 2018 saw the largest year-on-year growth in renewable energy generation ever seen in the NEM.
  • Grid renewable generation grew by nearly a third and when rooftop solar is included renewables supplied 21.4 per cent of electricity in the NEM.
  • For the first time, renewable energy is displacing emissions intensive black coal electricity generation in the NEM, not just expensive gas generation, further accelerating emission reductions in the energy sector.
  • Greenhouse gas emissions in the electricity sector (National Energy Market) have decreased 20 per cent since its 2008 peak due mainly due to transition from fossil fuel generation to renewables.

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During the first major heatwave of the Summer (January 3), rooftop solar helped curb energy supply by nearly 10 per cent in Victoria and South Australia.

Read the full report here.