In today’s talking points: Australian energy firm closes the gender pay gap, Record rollout of solar panels across Australia, China expected to create new energy ministry, China’s Energy giants to form joint venture
Australian energy firm closes the gender pay gap
Energy Australia on the eve of International Women’s day spent an additional $AUD 1.2million to equalize the pay-packets of 350 female employees to their male counterparts. The average pay adjustment across the employees was $AUD 3,500, with a review scheduled in five years. Energy Australia’s current managing director Catherine Tanna apologized for the change taking so long.
Read more: ABC
Record rollout of solar panels across Australia
According to new figures Australia’s solar industry is booming with a record 3.5 million panels installed in 2017, almost 9,500 a day. Additionally there was a 41% increase in installed renewable energy capacity across all states and territories; the ACT increased 57% in a single year. Since 2012 the cost of installing a consumer solar panel has halved.
Read more: The Guardian
China expected to create new energy ministry
As part of a process to make policymaking more efficient, China aims to create an energy ministry in order to oversee the country’s oil, natural gas, coal and power industries. Responsibilities of the new ministry would include pushing to liberalize China’s electricity market; boosting renewable energy use and waning the country off its current dependence on coal. If implemented, it would replace the existing regulator, the National Energy Administration (NEA), and would not be located under the powerful National Development & Reform Commission (NDRC).
Read more: Reuters
China’s Energy giants to form joint venture
Two of China’s largest energy companies, China Shenhua Energy Company and GD Power Development Co, have agreed to pool their coal-fired entities and assets in order to form a joint venture. The former will hold a 42.53% stake and the latter a 57.47% stake. The total value of the joint venture is approximately 10 billion yuan ($1.6bn US); according to the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission, the venture will focus on power and heat generation sales.
Read more: Xinhua