Government grants for two renewable energy projects

Thursday, 17 January, 2008

The Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr, has announced more than $8 million in grants for two renewable energy projects from the Australian government’s Renewable Energy Development Initiative.

“One of the projects will build prototypes in Tasmania to test wave and tidal energy technologies. The other project will locate deep geothermal energy resources in the earth’s crust in South Australia,” Carr said.

“Sydney-based BioPower Systems has been awarded $5 million to build and install full-scale prototypes of its bioWave wave and bioStream tidal power systems which will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions through carbon-free renewable energy.

“Each 20-metre prototype will generate enough power to supply up to 500 homes and two sites have been identified in Tasmania for the project.

“Tasmania was identified as the best place for the project because of its strong tides and consistent waves in the Bass Strait, and the benefits could result in reduced reliance on diesel-fired generators.”

Carr said that a South Australian-based project by Torrens Energy Limited has also been awarded more than $3 million to help it develop an innovative three-dimensional temperature field model (3D-TFM) that will help locate and define hot rock geothermal energy resources in the earth’s crust.

“This project will reduce cost and risk, and result in more efficient exploration of our vast geothermal resources and could minimise the need for costly, deep speculative drilling,"”Carr said.

The Renewable Energy Development Initiative is a competitive merit-based grant program supporting renewable energy innovation and its commercialisation.

It offers grants of between $50,000 and $5 million for research and development, proof-of-concept, and early-stage commercialisation projects with high commercial and greenhouse gas abatement potential.

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