Australia, Solar

SOLAR ENERGY POWERS AHEAD AS SOLAR SYSTEMS EXPANDS

October 5, 2007 (minister.industry.gov.au): Solar energy technology in Australia took another step forward today with Solar Systems’ announcement that they are investing in two new high-tech facilities in Victoria, Australian Industry Minister, Ian Macfarlane, said.“The Australian Government has great confidence in the potential of solar energy to contribute to our clean energy future,” Mr Macfarlane said at the announcement by the company in Melbourne.

“This is an important day for the on-going development of Australia’s renewable energy sector. It’s also a vote of confidence in the Government’s renewable energy policies and shows that many companies are choosing Australia to develop renewable energy technology.”

Melbourne-based Solar Systems is a world leader in high performance solar power station technology. Today it announced a new $32 million investment, including a $22 million high-tech solar manufacturing plant in Melbourne and a $10 million large scale research and development facility in Bendigo.

“The Australian Government is pleased to be a strong supporter of Solar Systems,” Mr Macfarlane said.

“It was awarded $75 million from the Low Emissions Technology Demonstration Fund, as well as a number of earlier grants to demonstrate the company’s remote area solar power systems in Central Australia.

“The Howard Government supports all renewable energy technologies from wind to geothermal to solar. It’s all part of our $3.5 billion climate change strategy of which around $1.4 billion is specifically for renewables.

“We’re also confident that the recently announced national Clean Energy Target and the Australian Emissions Trading Scheme – which will be the most comprehensive in the world – will provide strong long term incentives to encourage the deployment of renewable and low emissions technologies.

“With companies like Solar Systems committed to investing and growing in Australia, I believe solar energy has a very bright future,” Mr Macfarlane said.

Media contact: Claire Wilkinson 0419 840452

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