Despite the pandemic and its effect on the global economy, “Going Green” has been the mantra of most countries and big businesses. Industry experts believe that people are slowly shifting to an eco-friendly lifestyle to help reduce our carbon footprint. Consumers now support companies who practice sustainability in their businesses. It is a smart move towards achieving Net Zero by 2050.
As the drive continues to lower GHG emissions, here are some of the renewable energy and sustainability trends to look forward to in 2021.
A “Greener” Enterprise
A decade ago, the slogan “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” jumpstarted the trend to go green. It encouraged consumers to bring their own shopping bags and support retailers who sell organically-sourced food. In fact, Google has pledged to sustainable by 2030. Their commitment to being carbon-free will encourage more companies to follow their lead. Becoming a “green enterprise” is a positive change embraced by everyone.
Heating Through Geothermal Energy
Solar a popular source for renewable energy due to its abundance. However, geothermal energy is expected to rise, especially when it comes to heating. Instead of using power from a solar grid, heat can be derived from the ground. Ground heat is constant and not prone to power fluctuations. Geothermal is a cost-effective measure to stay warm during cold winter months.
Government Incentives as “Green” Leverage
Enterprises who wish to go green can leverage environmental credits. For example, Australia’s Small-scale Renewable Energy Scheme (SRES) motivates SME owners to use renewable energy systems. It will not only reduce their carbon emissions but also their power bills. By leveraging on these incentives, it helps build consumer trust and usher in a greener future. There are numerous rebates and government assistance programs as well as grants and funding available.
Federal and State Governments have signalled their intent on ramping up investment in energy efficiency and grant funding schemes (see $1.9 billion package and States recognise energy efficiency) to provide incentives to organisations reduce their energy costs and carbon emissions.
You can expect to see a number of Commonwealth and State-funded grants being made available in 2021 as governments look to stimulate economic recovery post-COVID-19 and achieve their Net Zero Emissions targets.
Energy Users Will Shift to Lean & Clean Energy
Energy users will continue to invest in energy efficiency upgrades to reduce their energy cost base. We also expect to see an increase in Solar PV and Battery Storage installations across Australia.
Solar Power Purchase Agreements are also likely to become even more popular allowing organisations to implement Solar PV at little to no upfront cost with significantly less hassle to maintain the equipment as that is taken care of by the PPA provider. While Solar PPAs have predominantly been for commercial clients, you can expect to see Residential Solar PPAs becoming more common.
Long-established energy producers are aware of the world’s goal to Net Zero and will shift to renewable energy resources. They will seek to diversify to solar, wind and hydro to help their businesses stay afloat.
Energy as a Service Agreements
In 2020, plans to implement energy efficiency projects were scaled back, put on hold or scrapped entirely as COVID-19 had a massive impact on organisations’ budgets and cash-flow. Innovative funding models such as Energy as a Service Agreements (EaaS )- including 3E group Services Agreement – will greatly improve organisations’ ability to fast-track projects to achieve their sustainability objectives.
Energy as a Service (EaaS) agreements will become more popular as organisations realise the benefits of off-balance-sheet project funding – zero debt and zero upfront capital costs – to implement energy efficiency upgrades.
These are just some of the trends in renewable energy to look forward to in 2021. Shifting to green is expected to catch on so watch them closely!
3E group’s Role in the Future of Renewable Energy
At 3E group, we are passionate about “Imagineering a sustainable future”. We specialise in providing end-to-end engineering-based energy efficiency and renewable energy generation and energy storage solutions for government and commercial organisations. We also provide clients with innovative project funding solutions including our flagship Energy as a Service Agreements (ESA)
For more information, or to discuss your sustainability requirements, call 1300 55 77 64 or book a free 30-minute phone appointment today!