On Monday 29 January 2018 the Energy Change Institute hosted a roundtable discussion on how to grow Cooma as a centre of excellence for research, development, training and further education in renewable energy.
The event, organised by Dr Mike Kelly (Federal Member for Eden-Monaro) included the Honorable Mark Butler, Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy, and Mr Pat Conroy, Shadow Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy, and was attended by key stakeholders in industry, government and academia.
Participants heard Dr Kelly’s vision to establish Cooma as a centre of excellence for renewable energy research and education by building on the plans for the Snowy 2.0 pumped-hydro energy storage scheme, and the cluster of solar and wind projects in the region.
“Now is the right time to be having the conversation on Snowy 2.0 and renewable energy opportunities in the Cooma region,” said Professor Ken Baldwin, Director of the Energy Change Institute.
“The next step is to determine the key research questions underpinning this opportunity to which the ANU can contribute as an energy research power house.”
ECI members highlighted ANU research capability through a number of short presentations. Dr Matt Stocks presented on pumped hydro storage and solar photovoltaics. Dr Joe Coventry discussed solar thermal, Professor Sylvie Thiebaux highlighted smart grid research and Associate Professor Jamie Pittock shared his research into water, the environment and Snowy 2.0.
The event closed with a discussion on leveraging the Snowy Hydro 2.0 expansion.