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SHC industry roadmap for Australia

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on February 8, 2018
Despite Australia’s high levels of solar irradiation and rising energy costs, its solar heating and cooling market has been in decline each year since 2010. The newly installed glazed and unglazed collector area went from a peak of 1.14 million m2 in 2009 (798 MWth) to 544,670 m2 in 2016 (381 MWth) – less than half of what it used to be. Reversing the downward spiral is the aim of an industry roadmap, titled Solar Heating and Cooling in Australia´s Built Environment, which was commissioned by ARENA, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, and is currently under review. During an internal workshop in Abu Dhabi last November, Australian-based consultancy Coolgaia discussed the findings from the roadmap with solar cooling experts working on Task 53 of the IEA Solar Heating and Cooling Programme (see photo). 
Photo: Task 53

Australia: Good Funding for Solar Process Heat, but Little Trust by Industry

Submitted by Baerbel Epp on June 22, 2016
IRR rates for solar thermal in AustraliaAustralia’s energy policy has been in the international press mostly for its shift back toward coal under the former Prime Minister Tony Abbott. However, Jeremy Osborne, Director of Energy Analysis & Engineering, said in an interview with solarthermalworld.org that Australia did have a “supportive government despite all the news”.  Since July 2015, renewables for industrial processes has been one of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency’s (ARENA) investment priorities, which includes solar process heat. ARENA also published the report Renewable Energy Options for Australian Industrial Gas Users in September 2015, emphasising that lower-temperature process heat systems at around 100 °C are most “prospective at present” (see the attached document). Positive Internal Rates of Return (IRR) are achieved with gas prices above Australian Dollar (AUD) 5 per gigajoules (GJ). According to the report, the wholesale price for gas was between 6 and 8 AUD/GJ in 2014 and is expected to rise to between 9 and 12 AUD/GJ before the end of the decade. 
Chart: ARENA
 

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