Fremantle heads into a totally renewable future

Fremantle has what it takes to be run completely off renewable energy.
Fremantle has what it takes to be run completely off renewable energy.

THE future could see Fremantle run completely off renewable energy, according to Federal member for Fremantle Josh Wilson.

Mr Wilson, who hosted Federal opposition climate change and energy spokesperson Mark Butler during his visit to Fremantle last week, said WA already had the natural resources to pursue wind, wave, solar, bio-energy and geothermal options to be a national and international leader in renewable energy.

“There’s no reason in future that we couldn’t meet all our stationary energy needs from renewable sources, but that will require supportive policy and investment over the next few decades at least,” he said.

“It’s critical that we approach that transition with care so that the opportunities and impacts are balanced fairly.

“Like any change, it will be disruptive and we need to focus on creating new jobs, supporting communities in transition, and making sure that low-income households aren’t left out of the benefits that come through renewable technology.”

According to the Australian Renewable Energy Index, Australia’s renewables sector produced enough energy last year to power up to 70 per cent of Australian homes.

Fremantle mayor Brad Pettitt said the City supported the increased use of renewable energy because it was better for the environment and cheaper for ratepayers.

“Under the One Planet Fremantle program, the City has a carbon neutral policy and has committed to being 100 per cent powered by renewables by 2025,” he said.

“We have a dedicated program of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, including the widespread installation of solar energy solutions on buildings like the Town Hall and Civic Centre, installation of LED lighting in parks and public places and the upgrade of the Fremantle Leisure Centre to use geothermal and other renewable energy sources.

“Our aim is for the new administration building at Kings Square to be the first zero carbon building of this scale in Australia, meaning it will produce as much energy as it uses throughout the year and the City is also working with Australian-based company Epuron to develop a solar farm on the old South Fremantle landfill site.”

Dr Pettitt said Epuron had until August 2019 to secure environmental and regulatory approvals, seek a customer for a power purchasing agreement and to complete construction.