WA to fast-track wind, solar and green hydrogen and manufacturing approvals

Alinta Wind Farm from Infigen Energy - optimised
Iberdrola’s Alinta Wind Farm in Western Australia. (supplied)

Western Australia’s Labor government has created a new green energy approvals team to fast track the growing pipeline of renewable energy and green hydrogen and manufacturing projects in the state.

The state is to spend $22.5 million on the Green Energy Approvals initiative, which will drive investment in wind and solar power projects, renewable hydrogen industries, lithium mining, critical minerals processing, as well as manufacturing green energy products such as batteries, electrolysers, solar panels, and wind turbines.

The government says more than 40 green projects are already undergoing current assessment by the Initiative or are being regulated by WA’s department of water and environmental regulation.

More than 30 other proposals are also expected to be referred for assessment over the next 12 months. Most of the projects relate to green hydrogen opportunities.

The initiative comes months after WA unveiled a stunning new assessment of its green industry opportunities – combining renewable production, critical minerals, green hydrogen and other green industries.

Its report estimated demand for renewable electricity to supply these big industrial plans could require more than 50GW of new wind, solar and storage to be built in just two decades.

“This new, streamlined approvals pathway will ensure Western Australia continues to be a destination of choice for renewable industry investors,” said Roger Cook, Western Australia’s new appointed premier.

“The whole-of-government Green Energy Approvals Initiative will drive the green industries boom in WA, supporting local jobs and a strong economy into the future.

“It will draw new investment and improve our renewable energy credentials while ensuring the environment is protected for future generations.”

The Initiative is aiming to target a “significant number” of these projects in the coming weeks to trial and optimise its new processes.

Green hydrogen proposals make up the largest number of green energy projects already working their way through the assessment pipeline, though wind energy, lithium mining, and critical minerals processing proposals also represent a significant portion.

To further streamline the approvals process for such projects, a new Green Energy Major Projects Group is being established within the department of jobs, tourism, science, and innovation. The point of this new Group will be to help steer new projects and investors through government processes.

Similarly, a new Green Energy Expert Panel is set to be formed, consisting of government and industry experts that will provide WA’s independent Environmental Protection Authority with necessary information in a timelier manner.


Joshua S. Hill is a Melbourne-based journalist who has been writing about climate change, clean technology, and electric vehicles for over 15 years. He has been reporting on electric vehicles and clean technologies for Renew Economy and The Driven since 2012. His preferred mode of transport is his feet.

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