New research by the non-profit solar energy company Australian PV Institute and the University of New South Wales has stated that solar panels in Brisbane’s CBD could provide significant savings.
According to Renate Egan, the Institute’s chair, they have done a stocktake of the solar potential of Brisbane’s CBD and from what they have worked, Brisbane could install 188 megawatts of solar on the rooftops of the CBD and produce enough power to meet 11% of the demand of the CBD.
In conducting the stock take, the institute used its new Solar Potential Map to calculate how much electricity can be generated from any particular roof in Brisbane’s CBD. Egan said they have found close to 50% of the roofs could have solar panels.
Egan said that the institute had also engaged with the Queensland Government, providing the initial upfront capital and investments to install the panels on government buildings like the Queensland Performing Arts Centre and Suncorp Stadium. Queensland’s Energy Minister Mark Bailey has stated that anything that helps achieve their renewable energy target by 50% by the year 2030 is being considered.
Energy fellow at the Grattan Institute David Blowers agreed with the PV Institute’s findings on Brisbane’s solar power potential. But he added that solar was still more expensive than the present and the traditional energy mix of coal, wind and gas. Blowers does not believe it could replace coal in the future and was not convinced Queensland could not meet the renewable energy target.