Blustery week generates record wind power for South Australia

6 September 2012

MELBOURNE: The southern regions of Australia have experienced such windy conditions this week that wind generated over half of South Australia's power.

According to data from the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), wind energy accounted for 85.5% of demand on Monday – a new record – 57.9% on Tuesday and 55% on Wednesday.

Russell Marsh, Policy Director, Clean Energy Council announced the figures. He commented: “South Australia has proven once again that wind energy can generate real power – and lots of it.”

“All this wind is putting South Australia well ahead of the curve on Australia’s 20% Renewable Energy Target, and helping to provide farmers and local businesses in regional areas with extra income. It also means the state’s residents collectively have a lower carbon price bill, while getting fully compensated by the Federal Government under the scheme.”

The capacity surge supports AEMO data showing emissions from South Australia’s electricity sector have dropped every year since 2005-06, and reduced by more than 27% over the last five years.

As well as continuing to slash the state’s emissions, wind energy also provides lower cost energy for Australians and is helping form a solid platform for energy security into the future.

Caroline Bayliss, Australia Director, The Climate Group says: “This impressive result reflects the leadership of South Australia under former Premier Mike Rann and the current Government, led by Premier Jay Weatherill. South Australia has actively opened the state’s doors to wind power development by providing regulatory certainty and enabling planning frameworks and taxation incentives for wind investors”.   

South Australia now produces more electricity from wind than from coal – around a quarter of the state’s generation, putting it in a world leadership position that is on par with Denmark.”

South Australia’s positive approach is not just limited to wind either, as the state also boasts the highest per capita uptake of solar power in Australia. In June 2011, South Australia reached the 20% Renewable Energy Target, three years ahead of the state’s own deadline and nine years ahead of the national timeline; and not to rest on its laurels, South Australia then increased its Renewable Energy Target to 33% by 2020.


Image by Matt Phipps


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