The Latrobe Valley and broader Gippsland region are leading the way in renewable energy innovation.

The Latrobe Valley Authority together with a range of industry, education, government and community partners are working closely with the Gippsland Climate Change Network to identify opportunities to further leverage new energy as one of Gippsland’s regional strengths.

The region's extensive electricity infrastructure and transmission network are significant assets which provide opportunities for utility scale renewable energy generation.

A number of renewable energy projects are now coming online, many of which have been supported through the Latrobe Valley Authority’s New Energy Jobs and Investment Fund, as well as through the Gippsland Smart Specialisation strategy.

Smart Energy

Communities across Gippsland are paving the way for sustainable local energy generation, storage and distribution through exploring virtual energy platforms, emergency energy resilience, economic opportunities, and community-led emissions reductions.

As part of Gippsland’s Smart Specialisation approach, a Smart Energy Innovation Group is bringing together local industry, community, education and government to identify community energy and smart grid opportunities in Gippsland.

Innovative models of smart community energy are being researched and tested by several communities focussed on engagement, planning, design, financing and implementation. Some areas of interest include virtual power plant markets, low voltage smart grid technology, end of line community energy landscapes, community energy on public buildings, energy literacy and the recycling and reuse of used solar panels.

Bioenergy

Bioenergy is a form of renewable energy that uses organic materials to produce heat, electricity and a variety of products and materials. Bioenergy is about using waste products as a resource and transitioning to circular economy.

As part of Gippsland’s Smart Specialisation approach, a Bioenergy Innovation Group is bringing together local industry, community, education and government to identify bioenergy opportunities in Gippsland.

Some areas of interest include biomass crop trials, pyrolysis technology, industrial seaweed aquaculture, food waste processing, mobile energy systems, and opportunities for combined forestry transition and renewable energy infrastructure.

Geothermal

Geothermal capitalises on Gippsland’s extensive, accessible and world class hot and cold aquifers insulated by coal layers.  The benefits of this clean energy could provide heating or cooling in public, commercial or agricultural situations.

As part of Gippsland’s Smart Specialisation approach, a Geothermal Innovation Group is bringing together local industry, community, education and government to identify geothermal opportunities in Gippsland.

Some areas of interest include mapping and digitising source locations, depths and temperatures, low temperature models for district heating, space heating for industry (hot houses), and high temperature options for electrical energy generation.