Australia’s technology investment for net zero emissions by 2050 explained

What are low emissions technology and how can these aid in promoting the environment, sustainability governance (ESG), and reducing the country’s carbon footprint?

Australia’s technology investment for net zero emissions by 2050 explained

Australia’s ambitious push for its net zero emissions goal paved its way to bid for hosting the United Nations (UN) Climate Summit this 2022. The country is geared toward reducing emissions by 43 percent in 2030 and net zero in 2050, according to the country’s new Foreign Minister Penny Wong. As part of this goal, it has prepared its data driven policy and Technology Investment Roadmap to develop and deploy low emissions technology.

What are low emissions technology and how can these aid in promoting the environment, sustainability governance (ESG), and reducing the country’s carbon footprint?

What is the Technology Investment Roadmap?

The Technology Investment Roadmap is the cornerstone of Australia’s emissions reduction plan to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The roadmap aims to refocus government investment on low emissions technologies and keep their costs the same as the current high emissions technologies.

At a glance, the roadmap seeks to deliver low-cost clean energy to industries and households. It also aims to increase productivity and make jobs available while expanding new export markets that offer low emissions commodities.

What is the Technology Investment Advisory Council?

On April 18, 2020, a Technology Investment Advisory Council was established to guide the government on investment priorities with regard to low emissions technologies. Chaired by Dr. Alan Finkel, the Council is composed of leaders from different industries including technology, science, business, and government.

Who Implements the Technology Investment Roadmap?

The Australian government is not acting alone when it comes to implementing the investment roadmap for technology. There are specific agencies involved to efficiently execute the goals:

  • Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) – ARENA was established in 2012 to support the government’s transition towards net zero emissions. Since then, ARENA unlocked $8.04 billion worth of investment in the renewable energy industry.
  • Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) – CEFC is the Australian government’s arm in accelerating investments in cleantech innovation, energy generation, agriculture, property, infrastructure, waste, and transport.
  • Clean Energy Regulator (CER) – The CER administers the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) and is an independent statutory authority that administers the strategies for reducing, managing, offsetting, and measuring Australia’s carbon emissions. The CER’s roles are compliant with the climate change law.

How Are Priority Technologies Prioritised?

The Australian government together with the Department of Industry, Science, Energy, and Resources use the following criteria in identifying which low emissions technologies should be prioritised:

  • Abatement Potential
  • Economic Benefit
  • Comparative Advantage
  • The ability of the government to help develop and deploy the technology

Technology Investment Towards Australia’s Net Zero Emissions Goal

Businesses have started feeling the impacts of climate change in terms of operation, cost, and scarcity of resources. Thus, sustainability and ESG become a core doctrine in creating brand identity and culture. Some studies even showed that consumers are willing to abandon brands that do not advocate for the environment, sustainability, and governance.

In Australia, CEOs are preparing their organisations in transitioning toward a greener economy. Some of them have even assessed the potential risks of climate change-related events in the future. The Technology Investment Roadmap follows an enduring process on how to find low emission technologies and invest in them. As indicated in the roadmap, the process involves:

  • Survey for emerging low emissions technologies such as solar photovoltaics, wind turbines, air-source heat pumps, combined hot water, and ground source heat pumps.
  • Identify priority low emissions technologies with the biggest economic impacts such that Australia can make a difference.
  • Set economic stretch goal for each low emissions technology to help lower their cost or be the same as the cost of high emissions technologies.
  • Identify ways to meet the stretch goals
  • Invest in technologies to help meet the stretch goals
  • Measure how these technologies contribute to making a difference over time.

ESG Reporting

ESG initiatives allow businesses to improve their resilience and value. In connection to Net zero 2030 in US and Net zero 2050 for Australia, ESG reporting aims to disclose an organisation’s information on environmental, social, and corporate governance. Through an ESG report, investors get an overview of a business impact on these three areas. A company’s ESG performance primarily helps manage and reduce investment risks.

Big Data and Sustainability

The role of big data in achieving sustainability and in combating the impacts of climate change is important. Big data provides an opportunity for anyone to understand the world’s demand for water, food, and energy.

At a glance, big data can:

  • Help measure the performance of products and services in terms of their impacts on the environment and not in terms of sales and profits alone
  • Help investors assess environmental risks and align their goals toward climate change initiatives
  • Provide a better understanding of human behaviors and trends

Big data is a big player in achieving sustainability by acting as a basis for better decision-making.

What Can Businesses Do?

Technology investment for net zero 2050 Australia highly relies on a data-driven policy or big data initiatives in order to achieve sustainability. Business owners can start reducing their environmental impacts by replacing outdated systems, tools, and activities. For instance, transferring data and workloads to the cloud can help promote energy efficiency.

Digital solutions can also reduce the environmental impacts of business operations. Digital solutions can be used to track ESG reporting and progress. Although the digital space may have downsides that include data privacy, future skills development, and inclusion, its benefits to a more circular economy are undeniable.


Big data and technology play a pivotal role in Australia’s technology investment for net zero emissions. Big data can trigger better regulations and data-driven policies that can optimise resources for organisations. To help achieve Australia’s net zero emissions goal, businesses can start complying with the country’s Technology Investment Roadmap and realigning their brand with a bigger sense of responsibility for the environment. Australia and the world have a better chance of achieving net zero emissions and sustainability when we make better use of the digital space and information.