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March 7, 2022

Victorian Government announces targets for offshore wind energy

The state has set rolling targets of generating 4GW of offshore wind energy by 2035 and 9GW by 2040.

Australia’s Victorian Government has unveiled the country’s first offshore wind targets, through which it aims to reduce emission levels and attract new investments.

The executive outlined the targets in its Victorian Offshore Wind Policy Directions Paper, in which it has set a goal of generating at least 2GW of clean energy by 2032.

This would be enough energy to power 1.5 million households.

The government has also set rolling targets of 4GW by 2035 and 9GW by 2040, which it aims to meet through competitive processes.

It expects to generate its first offshore wind power in 2028 at the earliest.

These initiatives are intended to help the state halve its carbon emission levels and reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

Last November, the executive committed nearly A$40m ($29m) under the Energy Innovation Fund to support feasibility studies and pre-construction works for three major offshore wind proposals, namely Star of the South, Macquarie Group and Flotation Energy.

With a combined capacity of 4.7GW, the three projects are estimated to provide electricity to around 3.6 million homes and bring more than A$18bn in new investment to the state.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said: “Today, Victoria has the lowest power prices in five years and the greatest annual increase in renewable energy of any state, ever.

“We’re not just talking about transitioning to clean energy, we’re actually delivering it – along with thousands of jobs in one of the world’s fastest-growing industries and cheaper bills for millions of households.”

Energy, Environment and Climate Change Minister Lily D’Ambrosio said: “We know it will take years to plan and develop the first tranche of wind projects in Australia, due to their complexity, scale, regulatory and infrastructure requirements – and we’re ready to start that journey today.”

In November 2020, the Victorian Government announced plans to invest A$1.6bn to establish renewable energy hubs across the state.

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