Offshore wind energy sites unveiled

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Energy Secretary Chris Bowen has highlighted six potential offshore wind sites as the government seeks to increase the amount of renewables in the grid.

The government has proposed an area in the Bass Strait near Gippsland for a site for the offshore wind facility, along with parts of the Pacific Ocean near the Hunter and Illawarra.

Other locations in the Southern Ocean near Portland, parts of the Bass Strait and the Indian Ocean near Perth and Bunbury are also highlighted.

Bowen said the facilities would help Australia achieve 82 percent renewable energy by the end of the decade.

“This is good news for these communities. Many jobs will also be created. These are areas that are undergoing economic change as our energy system changes,” he said in Sydney

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“We are way behind the game, way behind the rest of the players in producing wind for our coastline.”

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Mr Bowen said consultations for the offshore wind projects near Gippsland would begin immediately. Consultation details for the other five locations will be announced in due course.

It is estimated that Gippsland’s proposal would be enough to power 1.2 million homes in Victoria, while the industry, once fully operational, could create up to 8,000 jobs a year.

The announcement came a day after the Albanian government’s climate law was passed by the House of Representatives.

The bill entails a 43 percent reduction in emissions based on 2005 levels by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050.

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It will be sent to a Senate committee, which will report by the end of the month, before being discussed in the Senate.

Bowen said the bill’s approval was a step forward and he looked forward to seeing it passed by the Senate.

“It’s not symbolic, it’s practice. There are 10 years of delay and dysfunction, this parliament is taking big steps to end it,” he said.

“The passage of this bill sends a message to renewable energy, transmission and storage investors around the world that Australia is open to business in becoming a renewable energy powerhouse.”

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said an “economy-wide transition” would be needed to cut Australia’s emissions.

He said more needs to be done to reduce emissions, especially among the country’s biggest polluters.

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“You have to have an economy-wide transition here. It will take effort. It’s not easy, but we can do it,” he told UKTN Radio on Friday.

“As we do this, we can create economic activity and create jobs, especially in our regions.”

While the opposition has warned that the government’s emissions reduction target would lead to higher energy bills for families, Mr Albanese said the changes would help the economy grow.

He warned that a lack of action to cut emissions would negatively affect the country’s finances.

“Unless we do this transition, Australia will actually suffer and shrink, so we also have the opportunity to get cleaner, cheaper energy and create new industries,” he said.

– MONKEY

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