After almost three decades of prosperous economic growth with a heavy reliance on fossil fuels, a post-Covid-19 landscape is the ideal time to steer Australia towards clean energy, according to the chair of Tesla Inc., Robyn Denholm.
The Australian successor to Elon Musk as chair of the electric cars, solar panels and clean energy storage giant, said it is the time to embrace clean energy as the economy slowly recovers.
“I think rebuilding the economy post bushfires and Covid, it's a unique point in time when business leaders, consumers and political leaders can really change the fabric as we go forward,” Denholm said.
“We've had 29 years of good growth as a country. I think we should be using this pause that's happened in the economy to really change the trajectory and the vector of the economy towards more sustainable energy solutions and electric vehicles.
"'We should be planting the seeds now for the next 30 years of growth.”
Denholm was speaking ahead of the City of Sydney's visiting entrepreneur program which begins this Wednesday. She is among a number of high profile business leaders participating in the program including the CEO of New Energy Nexus, Danny Kennedy and founder and CEO at Sunfed, Shama Sukul Lee.
Since its inception in 2017, the program has brought high-profile international entrepreneurs to Sydney to share their expertise and knowledge with Australia’s local tech startup community.
This year the talks will focus on clean energy and sustainability with the focus on helping local startups grow and adapt to an evolving post-Covid-19 global business world.
City of Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore said Australia has an opportunity to focus on a green-led recovery.
“Sydney is the startup capital of Australia, and we want to ensure our ecosystem is as green and sustainable as possible," she said.
“The City of Sydney has a long record of taking bold and evidence-based climate action, and from July 1 our operations will be powered by 100 per cent renewable electricity, sourced from renewable energy farms in rural NSW.”
New Energy Nexus CEO, Danny Kennedy, said even though clean energy startups faced an uphill battle against the status quo of Australia’s fossil fuelled economy, the financial benefits are worth the hardships.
He said Australia has a great history. “We’re pioneers in solar and not just the deployment of it over the last decade,” he said.
For more information and to register for the free events, visit city.sydney/vep