At a time when we need to get renewable energy up to scale fast to reduce our greenhouse pollution, surely we’d be supporting research and development in Australia? Unfortunately not, as a new Greenpeace report released today shows. In 2005-06 in fact we put ten times more funds into fossil fuel R&D than we did into renewable energy. World class solar research institutions like those at University of New South Wales and the Australian National University are running off the sniff of an oily rag. We have had no Cooperative Research centres (CRC’s) for renewable energy since 2004, and yet the coal industry has 3 CRC’s.
The kicker is that when we do decide to get serious about climate change, we may well find that all our technologies and expertise has left the country for greener pastures.