Skip navigation

First Nations partnerships for renewable energy projects on rise in Australia: PV Tech

There are now 14 renewable energy projects in Australia that are being developed in partnership with First Nations communities.

Though none are yet operational, the First Nations Clean Energy Network's First Nations clean energy project tracker shows that mid-large scale solar, wind, green hydrogen, energy storage and microgrid projects are all under development with either partnerships or memoranda of understanding (MOU) in place with First Nations communities.

“First Nations communities are increasingly interested in being equity owners in projects impacting their land,” said Karrina Nolan, co-chair of the Network.

“Our First Nations project tracker shows the clean energy industry is starting to get the message that commercial outcomes from projects are improved with First Nations involvement.”

Notable examples of projects that are working with First Nations groups include the Aboriginal Clean Energy Partnership which is developing a 900MW solar-powered green hydrogen export hub in Western Australia.

A spokesperson for the partnership – which consists of First Nations representative groups and climate investment firm Pollination – said that it will employ “an integrated development process for heritage, native title, environmental and engineering approvals” that works with local communities.

ACEN Australia – the subsidiary of Philippines-based developer ACEN – is also planning a 3GW renewables hub in the Pilbara region in partnership with the Yindjibarndi Energy Corporation (YEC).

The YEC told PV Tech Premium earlier this year that the plan was “unique in that it is Indigenous led…the Yindjibarndi people will receive long term revenue from the energy YEC will make and sell, with an agreed 25%-50% equity participation by the Yindjibarndi nation in all projects.”

The rise in First Nations-partnered projects is a ray of positivity in an otherwise murky time for the Australian solar and renewables markets.


Read more of this article published by PV Tech here