Australia, Policy, Projects, Renewables

New licenses for Australia’s offshore wind industry

wind, offshore wind

Australia is taking a significant step towards unlocking the potential of offshore wind energy, with the Federal Government granting and offering the first feasibility licenses for projects off the coast of Gippsland, Victoria.

The move represents a major milestone in the development of the country’s nascent offshore wind industry, which is a crucial component in achieving a sustainable and reliable energy future.

In a joint announcement on Monday, Climate Change and Energy Minister Chris Bowen along with Victorian Minister for Climate Action and Energy Lily D’Ambrosio revealed that six potential projects have been granted feasibility licenses, allowing them to commence detailed assessments, including environmental studies and management plans.

Among the companies awarded licenses are High Sea Wind, Gippsland Skies, Blue Mackerel North, Kut-Wut Brataualung, Ørsted Offshore Australia 1, and Star of the South Wind Farm.

The government intends to grant another six licenses, subject to consultation with First Nations groups.

The proposed projects, if proven feasible, could generate a staggering 25 gigawatts (GW) of electricity – enough to power the Gippsland region’s annual industrial consumption 100 times over or more electricity than the entire state of Victoria generated last year.

“Granting feasibility licenses is the next step to helping deliver a new clean energy industry for Australia, as well as future-proofing energy security and reliability for Victoria,” Bowen said.

D’Ambrosio highlighted the role these projects will play in helping Victoria meet its renewable energy targets, including at least 2GW of offshore wind energy generation by 2032 and 9GW by 2040.

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