Renewable Energy Index - September 2017

16 Oct 2017

To assist the Australian community in understanding the role and contribution of renewable energy to meeting our energy needs while also providing an important source of employment and reducing pollution, Green Energy Markets produces the monthly Renewable Energy Index.

The index tracks the contribution of the renewable energy sector broken down by fuel type and state on a series of metrics that are intended to translate abstract concepts such as megawatts and tonnes of CO2 into concepts the community can understand and appreciate such as number of households powered, and number of cars’ pollution avoided.

September 2017

Meeting our power needs while reducing pollution

  • Wind and solar combined had their biggest ever month in September generating 2,363 GWh of electricity, exceeding the power produced by gas, and the previous monthly high of 2,257 GWh in October 2016.
  • This is the fourth time since 2016 that monthly generation from solar and wind exceeded that from gas. Taking into account projects under construction, by 2019 wind and solar generation can be expected to exceed that from gas throughout the year.
  • Once we also include the power produced by hydro and bioenergy, Australia produced an amount of renewable energy in September equal to the power consumption of 8.5 million homes.
  • Renewables made up 21.9% of the electricity generated across the east and west coast main electricity grids. The amount of renewable energy used in September avoided an
  • amount of carbon pollution equal to removing 9.3 million cars from the road.

Construction activity and job creation

  • 78 large-scale renewable energy projects were under construction at the end of September. This is up by 22 projects on last month due mainly to a surge of 14 smaller
  • solar projects from one company in SA. Of these new construction projects, 3 accounted for 94% of the extra capacity - the Wemen and Bannerton Solar Farms in Victoria, and
  • the Lilyvale Solar Farm in Queensland.
  • These 78 projects are estimated to create enough jobs to employ 12,702 people full-time for a year (“job-years” of employment), up by 761 on last month;

Rooftop solar installation jobs and power production:

  • 14,931 small-scale rooftop solar systems were installed in September 2017;
  • These systems will generate power equal to the needs of 25,296 homes ;
  • The systems installed in September will deliver around $180 million in power bill savings over the next 10 years for the households and businesses that installed them.
  • Installing these solar systems supported 4,819 full-tim e jobs (across installation, design and sales).


  • Environmental market insight

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