Renewable Energy Forum

Hon. MC de BRENNI (Springwood—ALP) (Minister for Housing and Public Works and Minister for Sport) (6.00 pm)

As the Premier said earlier this week, we are the solar state. I am proud to be part of a government that is determined to unleash our state’s potential for renewable energy—in particular, solar energy—into the future which is in stark contrast to those opposite. We all remember the ‘latte sippers’ sledge by the member for Clayfield. Well, there must be a lot of latte sippers in my neck of the woods. 

According to the Australian PV Institute, 34 per cent of dwellings in my electorate of Springwood have solar PV installed, based on existing boundaries. In the 4165 postcode that takes in Mount Cotton, that figure jumps to an astounding 47.2 per cent of households. Jimmy and Raj, who run the Valley Way Cafe at Mount Cotton, must be doing a roaring trade with all of those latte sippers! The future will be even brighter with renewable energy. Storage is becoming cheaper and more efficient, and Queensland leads the way nationwide for solar uptake. Here in the sunshine state we know that solar energy is limitless.

Recently I held a renewable energy forum at Mount Cotton State School. We had a fantastic turnout, with more than 60 local residents hearing from industry experts, including Mr Trevor Berrill, and we were pleased to be joined by the shadow minister for climate change and energy, Mark Butler, about how we can move forward and embrace solar energy.

Transitioning to clean energy forms is, as we know, inevitable. The people I represent want to be part of this clean energy future for Queensland. There are many Mount Cotton residents expressing concerns to me about another less clean form of power. There is a proposal on the books for a 160 square metre, 60,000-megawatt power station that will burn, of all things, chicken poo—65,000 tonnes of chicken poo. Mount Cotton is a wonderful residential area with a fantastic lifestyle. I share the residents’ concerns that this is not an appropriate place to be burning that sort of material. Quite frankly, I think the proposal stinks. Not only is the smell of burnt faeces unappealing; residents also have concerns about the traffic impacts of the poo being trucked in.

The future for renewable energy in our cities is about solar and batteries and wind energy. It is about energy efficiency and efficiently designed homes. The Palaszczuk government is delivering on this transition, and I am proud to be part of this work through the Queensland Building Plan. Labor backs solar and I am backing the residents of Mount Cotton as we work together for a true clean-energy future.