Developing renewable energy supply in Queensland, Australia: A study of the barriers, targets, policies and actions
The Australian Government has set an ambitious target that at least 20 per cent of Australia's electricity needs will be met by Renewable Energy (RE) sources by 2020. Given the limited use of RE sources for electricity generation, this national Renewable Energy Target (RET) leaves state, territory and municipal governments in a challenging policy position. In this article, we examine the Australian state of Queensland where RE provides approximately 4 per cent of the region's electricity supplies. The research utilizes stakeholder theory to examine the developmental barriers, targets, policies and actions identified by firms and stakeholder organizations in the RE industry sector. The results from our analysis show that RE developments face a range of socio-technical barriers that require timely actions in the areas of financial incentives, infrastructure enhancement, regulation reform, community-centred developments, technology and workforce investments, and information and education programs. Also, in the context of RE planning, while the national RET is the preferred setting, the differences between Queensland's RE installed generation capacity and electricity supply targets require clarification and agreement.