Call for renewable energy storage target

A new renewable energy storage target is the fastest way out of Australia's energy price crisis, an alliance of organisations says.

The independent Climate Council, Smart Energy Council and community organisation Solar Citizens is urging the Albanese government to set a storage target instead of propping up current generation.

Solar Citizens head Heidi Lee Douglas said on Monday more than three million Australian households with solar panels on their roofs have protected themselves from surging gas and coal prices.

Governments should enable more people to take up solar with a storage target that incentivises home or community batteries, including technology to send spare electric car power to the electricity grid, she said.

The call is also backed by domestic and global renewable energy developers and investors.

"We know there are billions of dollars waiting to be unlocked that will deliver the clean energy future," Simon Corbell, CEO of the Clean Energy Investor Group, said.

"A renewable energy storage target provides exactly the right signals to investors while also reducing costs to consumers," he said.

The organisations say new wind and solar farms coming online need the support of big batteries and household systems to deliver reliable, secure energy for Australian homes and businesses.

New data from the Climate Council found such a target could unlock $42 billion of investment, create 100,000 jobs in renewable energy and cut greenhouse gas emissions by accelerating more construction.

To rapidly cut emissions and reach over 80 per cent renewables by 2030, Australia would need to bring online at least 18 gigawatts of storage to support wind and solar, according to the research.

Rob Williamson, a member of the Advanced Materials Battery Council, said a target would underpin demand not only for grid battery storage but also for local manufacturing across the supply chain in Australia.

A renewable energy storage target could also encourage states to share cheap, clean energy, for example, taking in pumped hydro electricity at night and exporting abundant solar during the daytime.

Australia's energy ministers are finalising ways to support the grid and put a lid on soaring power bills, ahead of a meeting scheduled for next month in Gladstone, Queensland.

But an energy storage target is not on the agenda.

Critics say current government proposals would prop up expensive and unreliable coal and gas, which are the main drivers of recent energy price spikes for homes and businesses.