2022 delivers record solar and wind investment

Australian companies and households are racing to invest in wind and solar energy to power their homes, offices and factories in 2022, according to new data published by the CER today.

Large-scale wind and solar farm investment commitments grew nearly 50% in 2022, with 4.3 gigawatts (GW) of large-scale renewable energy capacity achieving a final investment decision (FID).

To put this in perspective, 4.3 GW is enough to power over 3 million homes.

The second half of last year also saw a step up in rooftop solar investment by households and businesses, with over 300,000 small-scale rooftop solar systems installed in 2022, contributing an additional 2.8 GW of renewable energy capacity. This is 22% higher than the Regulator’s estimate of 2.3 GW from early 2022.

Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Chris Bowen, said: “this is the scale of investment in cleaner, cheaper energy when you have a stable policy environment on climate and energy.

"This investment means new jobs across the country, and will support emissions reduction in the electricity sector and puts us on the way to 82% renewables by 2030,” he said.

“A majority of this increase in investment was after last year’s election, which proves renewable investors are responding positively to the Albanese Government’s strong emissions reduction targets and know that Australia is back open for business in clean energy.” 

As well as clean and cheap, energy also needs to be reliable.

Under the previous Government’s climate and energy chaos, Australia saw 4GW of dispatchable power leave the grid, and only 1GW come on.

The landmark Capacity Investment Scheme (CIS), agreed with States and Territories after years of delay, will drive around $10 billion investment in clean, dispatchable, and reliable power.

In addition, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s $176 million investment in 8 large scale batteries will help ensure wind and solar generation can be smoothed and stored for use when it is needed.

And all of this clean, cheap and reliable and energy will be connected with the Government’s Rewiring the Nation plan, to modernise the electricity grid and meet the demands of the rapidly changing market.

Renewable energy is by far the cheapest form of energy. By harnessing the opportunities that come with this investment, Australia can power our economy with more affordable power, and reduce our vulnerability to global energy shocks.

Australia can and should be a renewable energy superpower – powering the Australian economy, and the economies of our trading partners with affordable renewable energy.

These opportunities have been missed for too long – it’s encouraging to see such a turnaround in investor confidence after the May election.