The Melbourne-based Clean Energy Council has cancelled its annual Clean Energy Summit, which was due to take place in Sydney on July 13 and 14, due to the Covid-19 outbreaks around the country.
Sydney and neighbouring regions went into a two-week lockdown over the weekend. On Wednesday, New South Wales recorded 22 new cases of community transmission, suggesting the outbreak is yet to peak. Parts of Queensland, Western Australia and the Northern Territory are also in shorter lockdowns.
While the Sydney lockdown is currently due to end on July 10, there is no guarantee that will happen, and even if it does, it is unlikely restrictions will lift completely. The Clean Energy Council said that uncertainty gave it no option but to cancel the summit
It said it would give ticket holders the option of a refund or a deferment until next year’s summit, adding it was also exploring the possibility of holding a virtual summit.
“While we explored every available option to allow us to still hold this year’s event, the uncertainty of the current situation forced us to make the difficult decision to cancel,” the organisation said in an email.
“We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of our sponsors, exhibitors, speakers and attendees for your support of this event. We will be in contact in the coming days to arrange a full refund or a deferment to 2022.
“We are also exploring the option of holding a virtual version of the 2021 Australian Clean Energy Summit, so stay tuned for updates.”
However, it said Reed Exhibitions would proceed with Energy Next on August 25 and 26 at ICC Sydney.
It said the Clean Energy Council’s Solar Masterclass would also still run at Energy Next, “providing solar designers and installers with all the latest expert advice on the major design and installation issues currently facing the industry”.
James Fernyhough is a reporter at RenewEconomy. He has worked at The Australian Financial Review and the Financial Times, and is interested in all things related to climate change and the transition to a low-carbon economy.