Mid-year update – 4 August 2020

I was appointed interim Program Director of the BRC-A in March, just as the team was organising our in-person Buyers Bootcamp in Brisbane. The venues and speakers were locked in and flights booked. Then things started to change. What seemed like a small risk increased in likelihood hour to hour. By mid-March, borders closed, schools went online, lock downs began and the decision became clear – the Brisbane bootcamp was postponed.

I found the uncertainty to be both concerning and exhilarating. I was concerned about health (including my own), but more absorbed with the implications of a microscopic virus for economies, work practices, ethics and societal resilience.  The ideologies of world leaders were exposed as they sought to optimise the trade-offs between their economies and the welfare of their people. The immediacy of leaders grappling with these dilemmas and the feedback to the decisions of individuals like me was as once intoxicating and confusing.

But there were moments of clarity through the uncertainty. One of these moments was when the team reiterated our shared vision to increase the quality and quantity of Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) in Australia.  We saw, with 2020-clarity (pardon the pun) that our work was more important in the post-COVID-19 society where economic recovery becomes a priority.  We’d always seen PPA deals as a win-win opportunity. Now they had become a win-win-win –through which organisation gain business value, stimulate the economy and accelerate societal recovery.

As the BRC-A team adapted rapidly to an online work environment, we sustained a clear message to energy buyers: PPA continues to be a strategic deal for your organisations. Our Buying Power Webinar series has attracted over 300 registrants, our buyers’ bootcamp was oversubscribed. We have also upgraded our online members portal, which now allows Developer and Service Provider Members to add additional information about their offering and case studies of their success stories so buyers have access to more detailed information. There is also a lot of work going on that our members don’t always see – the networking and meetings that all help to build awareness of the opportunity corporates have to do renewable PPA deals.

We enter the new financial year with momentum. Our Buying Power webinar series continues and our Developers Bootcamp and Buyers Bootcamp are coming up in August and September! Members are now encouraged to log in, update your company profile and upload a case study to help our Buyer members find you and learn about your unique offering and prior work.

Lockdown has also been a ‘learn-up’ for the team.  We have refined our strategy including reframing our business model with an aim to create deeper and more targeted connections with sector-based peak bodies. We are exploring what our role is to enable a market in aggregation or PPA deals. The team is clear and motivated… PPAs are going to be a pivotal part of the post-COVID rebuild.  We offer a strategic opportunity to businesses to leverage their buying power to hedge against volatile energy prices, meet the sustainability targets and build trust in the community as they provide meaningful contribute to economic generation in the post Covid-19 recovery phase.

Thank you for your support and interest in the BRC-A. Let’s continue to work together to increase the quantity and quality of renewable PPAs done here in Australia.

Genevieve Mortimer

Acting Program Director, BRC-A