Calls for Far South Coast to be powered by 100 per cent renewables by 2030

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Far South Coast group Clean Energy for Eternity are pushing for Tathra, and the Bega Valley, to be powered by 100 per cent renewables by 2030. 

Far South Coast group, Clean Energy for Eternity, is aiming to have Tathra, and even the Bega Valley Shire, powered by 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030. 

Founder of Clean Energy for Eternity, Matthew Nott, says Tathra is on its way to achieving that goal,  "Well it's interesting, we just counted the number of solar panels on Tathra rooftops on Google Maps, and there's about 450 kilowatts of solar just in Tathra, which doesn't get us to a 50 per cent by 2020 target, not quite, but it gets us to about 30 per cent renewable energy for Tathra.

"So we're going to need a lot more storage, we're going to need a lot more solar panels, we're going to have think about how we store that energy, whether its with pumped hydro or battery technology. It's all existing technology that's coming down in cost very quickly and becoming more and more affordable. We're going to have a think about what we do with the electricity retailers, we still need poles and wires, but we're going to be buying less electricity from the retailers, so how do we keep them happy?

"There's a whole lot of complex but solvable issues around a small town looking at a 100 per cent renewable energy target, but we're not the first town to do this, not by a long stretch, in fact I've been talking to Newstead in Victoria, and they have a 100 per cent renewable energy target, for their town which I think has a population of about 15,000 people, so if they can do it surely we can. The ACT has a 100 per cent renewable energy target by 2020. This is a very achievable goal and what it does it brings investment into our town and it creates a lot of really good jobs."

Dr Knott says he's asking for Bega Valley Shire Council's support today as the town looks ahead to a public meeting on the 19th of February. He says renewable energy engineer, Andrew Blakers from the Australian National University, in Canberra will attend the meeting, as will the former leader of the Federal Liberal Party John Hewson.