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Joint Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell
&
Australian Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources
The Hon. Ian Macfarlane MP

5 December 2005

Howard Government backs renewable energy with $23 million REDI funding


The Australian Government today offered $23 million in grants for 10 projects that will help put Australia’s renewable energy industry on a strong footing and respond to the global greenhouse challenge.

Industry Minister, Ian Macfarlane, and Environment and Heritage Minister, Senator Ian Campbell, today announced the first-round grant offers under the Renewable Energy Development Initiative (REDI) and also called for round two applications.

Among the projects offered funding are a power plant that will harness the energy from hot rocks beneath the earth’s surface; solar-powered technology that uses 90 per cent less silicon; and research to identify ideal locations for extracting gas at landfill sites. The grants range from $70,000 to $5 million.

Mr Macfarlane said the projects would generate total investment of more than $60 million in new renewable energy technology in Australia and help build national benefits for the economy.

“These projects reflect the diversity of Australia’s research into renewable energy technologies and augur well for growth in this sector,” Mr Macfarlane said.

Senator Campbell said renewable energy technology played an important role in Australia’s energy mix and was a key element in its climate change response in the energy sector.

REDI’s focus on research and development and early commercialisation of renewable technologies fills a niche in Australian Government support for the sector and complements other Australian Government renewable energy and low emissions programmes,” Senator Campbell said.

Other projects offered funding today include:

The $100 million REDI fund supports innovative renewable energy technology development, providing matching grants worth between $50,000 and $5 million for renewable energy projects with significant greenhouse gas abatement potential.

A full list and further details of the 10 projects can be found at www.ausindustry.gov.au

The closing date for round two funding applications is 9 March 2006.

Further information on REDI can be found at www.ausindustry.gov.au or by calling the AusIndustry Hotline on 13 28 46.

Media contact:
Renae Stoikos (Senator Campbell's office) 0418 568 434 - 02 6277 7640
Kirsty Boazman (Mr Macfarlane’s office) 02 6277 7580, 0412 171 444

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