Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 6 Hansard (4 May) . .
Together when they are complete they will generate around three per cent of the territory's forecast 2020 electricity demand.
The successful proponents of the first and second wind auctions included a 9.4 megawatt wind farm near Bendigo in Victoria; a 200 megawatt wind farm stages 1 and 2 near Port Augusta in South Australia; an 80.5 megawatt wind farm near Ararat in Victoria; and a 100 megawatt sapphire farm 1 in the northern areas of New South Wales.
In relative terms, this is the biggest step change in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by any Australian jurisdiction. By moving to a 100 per cent renewable energy target by 2020, the ACT's contracted renewable energy capacity will increase from 550 megawatts to around 650 megawatts.
In addition to providing clean energy for the territory, that of itself being a grand aim, the renewable energy proponents will be making a substantial contribution to the ACT's economy. Economic benefits that have occurred to the territory as a result of renewable energy auctions include $12 million for the new renewable energy innovation fund; close to $6 million for a new renewable energy skill centre of excellence at the CIT; more than $30 million over a period of 20 years to support the development of micro grid technology research and commercialisation in the ACT; over $1 million going towards renewable energy technology demonstration; and over $1 million to support the development of trades training for the design, installation, maintenance and distribution of energy storage units.
We have also seen over $6 million directed towards the development of new world-class applied research capacity in the ACT and over $2 million to support the development of a CBR renewables precinct to attract renewable energy, energy storage and allied industries here to the territory.
The ACT government has recently committed $600,000 from the renewable energy innovation fund to the next generation energy storage pilot. I understand that this will target the rollout of around 200 residential and light commercial energy-storing devices across the ACT by the end of this calendar year.
But decarbonising the territory's electricity supply is still only half the problem. As the ACT's population continues to rise, so will energy consumption, placing further pressure on both the 40 per cent greenhouse gas reduction targets and the 100 per cent renewable energy target. To tackle the increasing consumption, the ACT government has implemented the energy efficiency improvements scheme, which commenced in January of 2013. Since that time over 95 per cent of participants surveyed have indicated that they would recommend ACTEW's energy saving house calls to a friend. So our community has embraced these energy saving initiatives that this government has put in place.
Another program is the ACTSmart program. ACTSmart provides a range of sustainability programs to assist households, businesses, schools and the community. To date, 433 small business and community groups have received a tailored
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