Renewable energy and associated technologies are an essential part of a program launched by the Australian Government to advance the country’s environment industry.CANBERRA, Australia, AU, 2001-10-17 [SolarAccess.com] The Environment Industry Action Agenda is intended to develop the industry both in Australian and in overseas markets. The Action Agenda outlines strategies to drive the industry’s growth to Aus$40 billion by the end of this decade, says industry minister Nicholas Minchin. The strategy has been developed jointly by government and industry. A recent study conducted for Environment Australia, quantifies the country’s renewable energy sector at $4 billion a year in commercial activity, with another $16.7 billion of annual revenue in the general environment sector. The industry provides goods and services that reduce the human impact on the environment, while enabling mainstream industry to increase efficiency and remain competitive in an increasingly global marketplace. “The recommendations in this report will have tremendous long-term benefits for Australian business, society and the environment,” says Fiona Wain, CEO of Environment Business Australia. “The immediate task is to secure industry and government funding for implementation of the far-reaching initiatives in the Action Agenda.” “Very aggressive marketing is called for to make Australia competitive with existing market leaders such as Canada, France and Germany,” she explains. “We need higher levels of commercialization of the outstanding Australian innovation, science and technology.” The environment industry can also help developing nations to overcome poverty and the lack of access to water and energy, says the report. These issues are increasingly expected to affect national stability and security in developing nation economies that are in transition. Countries with high pollution and high emissions of greenhouse gases could face even worse problems as their people increasingly seek to emulate western lifestyles, it warns, but Australia has the technologies to help such countries reduce their environmental impacts by protecting and enhancing resources and improving access to renewable energy sources.