WWF Australia’s proposed renewables led stimulus package to revive economy post-COVID-19, says GlobalData

As the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the economy to a standstill, the World Wide Fund (WWF) Australia report suggests that the proposed investments in the renewable technologies are against the government-favored fossil fuel industry. The stimulus measures in the WWF report mainly focuses on the development of green technologies and strengthening the exports. The report advocates a federal renewables stimulus package of nearly $2bn (90% of which would be spent in the next two years) for recovery. The overall stimulus package might favor Australia in generating nearly $10bn of economic benefits in the next couple of years, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Apart from generating significant employment opportunities, the report highlights five stimulus measures, namely, battery storage, developing solar projects, electric busses, modernizing manufacturing and accelerating the development of green hydrogen technologies. Focussing on a greener approach to rebuild the economy, it will be in line with the country’s commitment at the Paris agreement.

Out of the $2bn, about $520m, is proposed to be spent on improving energy efficiency, increasing employment, and increasing the utilization of renewable energy in manufacturing. Another $500m investment would be in battery storage which is expected to boost the battery storage manufacturing prowess and create several employment opportunities. Investment of $500m is proposed to be made on solar projects, which would allow the availability of cost-effective solar power to all communities and institutions. A proposed $240m investment in electric busses would help in forming a national manufacturing sector of electric busses, eventually boosting its export. Lastly, a proposed $225m investment is likely to enable the production and export of renewable hydrogen. The investment plan is well elaborated in all the domains of clean and renewable energy and is likely to provide a holistic boost to the sector.

Somik Das, Senior Power Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “The clean stimulus package can boost the growth of renewables and throw open significant employment opportunities.

“It would provide  the traction and re-orient the efforts to reboot the economy and deliver a healthier and more sustainable future. The transition to renewables and formation of a robust clean energy export market would help in transforming Australia to a net-zero emissions economy in the future. It is now to be seen how the government handpicks the investment ideas from the report and incorporate them fully or partially in the economy’s revival plan.”

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