Articles by Giles Parkinson

Why battery system costs may fall 3x faster than solar PV

Everyone, it seems, agrees that battery storage is the next big thing to affect global energy markets. What is not agreed upon is the timing. Some think this may happen in a few years, others in a decade or more. Some think it is happening now. The big question for many is how quickly battery […]

Communities take lead on renewable energy as big projects stall

The market for large-scale renewable energy projects may well be at a standstill in Australia, but at the community level, things are happening quickly. Dozens of projects have emerged as state governments tap into local ideas, offering grants for innovative projects that allow solar and other renewables to be developed at a local level, for […]

NSW allocates funds for community renewable energy projects

Six community energy projects in northern NSW have been awarded grants by the NSW government – including a range of solar, bio-gas and mini-hydro projects, and including one to take a whole village of 300 people off grid with renewables. They are among 19 groups to share some $846,000 in the latest round of funding […]

Byron shire aims to lead Australia on zero emissions community plan

Byron Shire – in the northern rivers region of New South Wales – is aiming to become the first region in Australia to become “net zero emissions”, with a goal to reduce emissions from energy, transport, buildings, waste and land use to zero within 10 years. The push by Byron mayor Simon Richardson means that […]

Lend Lease to pioneer large scale battery storage for new Perth suburb

Development groups Lend Lease and LandCorp are to pioneer a major community-level battery storage pilot that could change the way that residential communities source energy, including not being connected to the grid. The pilot project at Alkimos Beach, a sustainable community develop in the northern suburbs of Perth, will include 1.1MWh of lithium ion battery […]

Byron shire to be first in Australia to pilot virtual net metering

Byron shire is to become the first council in Australia to trial “virtual net metering” in what could presage a dramatic change in the way electricity is produced, but also in the role that networks play in the distribution of that electricity. Virtual net metering – also known as peer-to-peer trading – allows the excess […]

How an outback town proposes to switch off fossil fuels

The outback town Coober Pedy in remote South Australia will be able to turn off its fossil fuel generators for at least half of the year under a proposed solar-wind-battery hybrid model to be built by the town’s main electricity supplier. Coober Pedy – known as the Opal Capital of Australia – was last year […]

Developers to use storage to keep new housing estates off grid

The rapid change in the way electricity is delivered to customers is about to be highlighted by a new project that will see a new housing estate built without being connected to the grid. The idea has the support of the government of South Australia, a state which already sources 40 per cent of its […]

Byron shire aims to lead Australia on zero emissions community plan

Byron Shire – in the northern rivers region of New South Wales – is aiming to become the first region in Australia to become “net zero emissions”, with a goal to reduce emissions from energy, transport, buildings, waste and land use to zero within 10 years. The push by Byron mayor Simon Richardson means that […]

Lismore pushes new business models in pursuit of 100% renewables

The Lismore City Council is looking to a range of innovative measures – including community funding for a large scale solar project, a type of consumer retailing model, and an ambitious energy efficiency program as part of its plan to go 100 per cent renewable by 2023. As we reported last week, Lismore – in […]