Griffith Business School has established a new research and policy hub to help create sustainable energy solutions.
The Centre for Applied Energy Economics and Policy Research (CAEEPR) is a collaboration with industry partners in the energy sector, including Stanwell, CS Energy, Iberdrola, CleanCo, King & Wood Malleson and the Queensland Treasury Corporation.
Griffith University’s world-class research will underpin policy advice and thought leadership, helping guide Australia’s transition to clean power generation and transmission.
Griffith Business School (GBS) energy economist Professor Paul Simshauser AM helped broker the collaboration between Griffith University and a diverse group of industry partners.
“This would never have got off the ground unless industry were right there at foundation stage,” Professor Simshauser said.
“The electricity industry is going through an enormous transformation at the moment as it decarbonizes. It’s one of the key sectors of the economy and you need to have it firing on all cylinders.
“To hit net zero emissions you need to work out how best to get the grid operating on a largely carbon free basis.
“We have the industry backing and academic expertise to address these big challenges.”
CAEEPR is home to the country’s leading energy industry experts, including Professor Simshauser, Associate Professor Tim Nelson, Associate Professor Joel Gilmore and Dr Phillip Wild.
Professor Simshauser said CAEEPR provided an important pathway for postgraduate students, doctoral candidates and researchers.
“The Centre only launched a couple of months ago, but we’re already getting people putting their hand up for PhDs and postgraduate research.
“We have a pretty impressive group of people involved – from the Griffith University academics and adjuncts to the industry participants.
“We’re able to deal with the issues facing industry, governments and policymakers in real time.”
“And with electricity market reforms and all of the climate change implications, there’s no end to the help and advice that governments will need to navigate this, because it’s really complex.”
GBS Adjunct Professor Rod Welford is one of the founding members of the CAEEPR. A former Queensland Government minister and a thought leader in energy and sustainability, he said it was exciting to be part of CAEEPR.
“We want our research capability to be able to unpack and resolve some of the big challenges that we’re facing in the electricity and energy industry,” he said.
“The starting point is that the center has access to high-definition data about energy use across the Queensland electricity grid.
“Drawing on that data will allow us to identify solutions to the big challenges that need to be addressed.”
Professor Welford said Griffith was a natural home for CAEEPR, given the University’s commitment to climate change solutions.
“Sustainable energy is the biggest game in town at a state and national level in Australia,” he said.
“It’s wonderful that a university like Griffith that is renowned for its environmental focus also has a capacity to contribute to the design of a national electricity grid.”
“For young energy engineers or economists, this is an opportunity to get in the box seat of a field of knowledge that is going to be critical in the years ahead.”
For further information, visit the CAEEPR website.