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Purpose, objective and outcomes

ARENA’s purpose is to accelerate Australia’s shift to affordable and reliable renewable energy.

Our objective, which is set out in the ARENA Act, is to improve the competitiveness of renewable energy technologies and increase the supply of renewable energy in Australia. This objective sits at the core of ARENA’s performance framework, which can be found in the Annual Performance Statement section.

The Portfolio Budget Statement, published as part of the Federal Budget, describes the contribution that ARENA is expected to make to the Australian Government’s outcomes.

Our purpose statement was developed by the ARENA Board to align to the ARENA Act objective and also incorporate the priorities of the Government.


The Agency was established by the Australian Government in July 2012.

At this time, a number of the Government’s existing renewable energy programs and projects were also brought together under the ARENA umbrella, including those previously managed by the Australian Centre for Renewable Energy, the Solar Flagships Program and the Australian Solar Institute.

Unique role

ARENA has a unique role in the energy transition. Our job is to find and support the building blocks of Australia’s future energy system, helping to ensure that the benefits of the energy transition to the Australian economy are maximised.

We invest in projects spanning the innovation chain from research to early-stage deployment. We focus on finding and demonstrating first-of-a-kind renewable energy technologies and business models that can reduce technical and commercial risks and grow Australia’s renewable energy supply, knowledge and expertise.

We have the business acumen and industry knowledge to bridge the gap to commerciality. Without our support, the pathway to commercialisation would be blocked for many new technologies and businesses.

Core activities

ARENA not only provides funding but actively identifies and troubleshoots issues arising from the energy transition, from technological and commercial issues to regulatory and market barriers.

We support research, inform policy decisions, and bring together people from across the energy sector, government, startups and universities to collaborate with one another, and share their knowledge.

Projects funded to date

Since 2012, ARENA has committed approximately $1.44 billion in grant funding to support 478 projects focused on delivering smarter, more efficient ways of producing and using renewable energy.

The projects have a total value of $5.49 billion. ARENA’s involvement has strengthened the confidence of other investors, leveraging more than $4 billion in additional funding for the projects, as well as Australia’s renewable energy industry.