Australia is blessed with some of the world's best solar and wind resources, and if these are harnessed it can mean abundant cheap and clean energy to power new industries. We also have deposits of minerals that are needed for renewable energy and battery technology, such as bauxite, copper, and lithium.
These advantages mean that we are well-placed to manufacture components needed to transition the world to renewable energy. In Victoria wind turbine blades are already being manufactured in an old Holden factory, and in South Australia Sonnen has set up shop to produce household batteries as they're rolled out across the state. Exciting projects are already underway, but if all levels of government supported the uptake of clean energy, we could see this become a massive new job-creating industry.
Below are two examples of how clean technology is already creating jobs in Queensland.
Brisbane-based Redback Technologies is one of the companies driving renewable energy innovation in Queensland. They now employ over 50 people developing advanced, affordable solar and battery solutions.
Redback employs skilled workers, including software engineers, and were first kick-started by a Queensland Government grant – highlighting the importance of government investment to help drive innovation and kick-start new industries.
Redback's CEO Patrick Matweew is proud to offer free training for installers to learn more about their products, particularly because the small-scale solar and battery industry provides local employment for people living in regional Australia.
And as Patrick points out, when more household batteries are installed across regional communities, families save money on their power bills which they are then able to spend in the local community.
RedEarth Energy Storage
RedEarth Energy Storage started in 2013 and since then they've gone from strength to strength.
At RedEarth's Brisbane facility they engineer and assemble battery systems for homes and businesses. Currently, they employ 20 people, but are looking to expand as battery demand takes off.
"I used to work in the oil industry, but then I turned from the 'dark side' and now I’m working with renewables and battery technology in the future of electricity generation," said founder Chris Winter.
Watch Chris discuss their Brisbane battery manufacturing facility below.