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News  |  Mar 28, 2024

Solar Sunshot next step to decarbonisation

Solar Sunshot next step to decarbonisation

The $1billion package to develop a solar panel manufacturing hub at the old coal-fired Liddell station in NSW’s Hunter Valley announced by Prime Minister Albanese is another ‘next step’ along the path for Australia to become a renewable energy superpower.

This new investment in the Solar Sunshot program, to be managed by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), shows that the government and its policy advisers have been listening to industry, community groups, unions and the financial community, as we head to the 2024 Budget.

Package Implementation will involve more consultation with industry to identify the supply chain opportunities for Australian companies such as products and processes to make ingots and wafers, or making solar glass and inverters, and as well as technology and systems for deployment.

The good news is that much of the heavy lifting has already been done through the release last year of a comprehensive roadmap developed by the Australian Photovoltaic Institute (APVI) and led by esteemed international solar expert Muriel Watt Watt and funded by ARENA. It’s basically ready to go.

The decision to work as well with the NSW Government through its Net Zero Manufacturing initiative, AND the policy of leveraging NSW government procurement to build in offtake agreements with local solar manufacturers is another positive step.

Building components here, and facilitating certainty for buying locally made products are good policy outcomes.

Big tick!


In the Climate & Capital Forum’s pre-budget submission, we have called for $100bn of public capital and budget programs throughout the next ten years to establish policy certainty, which would attract $200-400bn of private capital.

The PM says there’s more to come. We look forward to the 2024 Budget and the government further illustrating its commitment for us to become a renewable energy superpower with policies that support investment in Australia’s post carbon economy.