Zero-Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific Grand Challenge Project

Indigenous engagement with renewable energy industries

In late 2018, staff from CAEPR contributed to a successful bid to win the ANU Grand Challenges Scheme (http://www.anu.edu.au/news/all-news/vcs-update-anu-grand-challenges-scheme) The bid was led by the Energy Change Institute (http://energy.anu.edu.au), and is entitled Zero Carbon Energy for the Asia Pacific (http://energy.anu.edu.au/eci-grand-challenge).

The Zero Carbon Energy project has been funded from 2019 to 2023.

The ANU Energy Change Institute’s Grand Challenge – Zero-Carbon Energy for the Asia-Pacific (ZCEAP) – recognizes that Australia is a renewable-energy, resource-rich nation, whose immediate neighbours in the Asia-Pacific will account for two-thirds of the world’s energy demand growth in the coming decades. Decarbonizing that additional energy use and cutting existing emissions from the region are essential if the world is to have any chance of meeting its goals for limiting climate change.

In a rapidly decarbonizing world, Australia’s carbon-based exports will soon have to be replaced by zero-carbon embedded energy exports in order to maintain our role as an energy superpower. The Grand Challenge project is undertaking inter-disciplinary research to underpin a transformation in the way Australia trades with the world and with the Asia-Pacific – based on renewable energy.

In addition to responding to the technological and geo-political challenges that arise from the large scale export of renewable energy to Australia's neighbours, the Zero Carbon project recognises the potential multi-generational opportunities for sustainable development of Indigenous communities in Australia's north west in engaging with renewable energy industries.

The 'Indigenous engagement with renewable energy industries' sub project of the ZCEAP project is being conducted by A Prof Janet Hunt, Dr Kathryn Thorburn and Dr Lily O'Neill.

This project’s overall aim is to understand whether and how Indigenous people can benefit from renewable energy generation in NW Australia. Specific objectives of this project are to:

* Identify risks and opportunities associated with various scales of RE developments in NW Australia to help inform Indigenous people;

* Identify policy options to capture benefit of such developments (at all scales) for Indigenous people;

* Map the future energy security issues (access and reliability) facing remote communities (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) in NW Australia;

* Build partnerships to influence policy and legislative development in renewable energy and regional development planning; and

* Build partnerships to accelerate Indigenous business development, to capture and maximise opportunities for Indigenous benefit from this growing industry.

The project team will be contacting Indigenous organisations and partners in the first half of 2019 to seek buy-in to project as it develops.

Updated:  11 February 2019/Responsible Officer:  Centre Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications