Published: Thu, March 16, 2017
Global | By Maureen Mccoy

NZ unable to help Australia with latest energy crisis

NZ unable to help Australia with latest energy crisis

"Consumers have had to contend with a series of costly and disruptive power outages this summer and the South Australian energy plan promises to deliver greater security and better outcomes on prices for consumers", spokeswoman Rosemary Sinclair said.

According to Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis the grid-scale battery will modernise South Australia's energy grid and begin the transformation to the next generation of renewable energy technologies.

The answer is pretty much unknown at this point, but since 2008 South Australian household electricity bills have risen about 60 per cent.

Power and gas giant AGL said the plan to safeguard SA from a repeat of crippling blackouts that hit past year appeared to be a "considered and comprehensive" response to the state's energy crisis.

South Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said Port Augusta residents and people all over the state will be devastated after state government "backed the wrong horse".

The SA Government said parts of its energy plan would start happening immediately, but projects such as the new gas-powered plant would take longer.

It will spend $500 million for the project and a new gas-fired power plant.

A new Energy Security Target will increase South Australia's energy self-reliance by requiring more locally generated, cleaner, secure energy to be used in South Australia.

The South Australian Chamber of Mines and Energy said the strategy had energy reliability at its core and would help businesses remain nationally and globally competitive.

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The new gas-fired power plant is budgeted to cost $360 million, $150 million will be committed to the SA Renewable Technology Fund and new PACE grants are worth $24 million.

"South Australian business and residents can not afford a repeat of the energy issues experienced over the past eight months", it said.

In its response to the Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market (NEM) released earlier this month, BHP Billiton remained critical of the NEM and reiterated the damage an unstable supply has caused to its Olympic Dam operation.

Federal Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg on Tuesday said South Australia's plan was "nonsense", with the government seeking legal advice if the move was in breach of national electricity market rules.

Over the border in Victoria, the State Government announced yesterday it will invest an additional $20 million to support large-scale energy storage initiatives.

"Jay Weatherill has caved into the Turnbull renewables scare campaign by shifting to gas instead of building solar thermal in Port Augusta", Mr Bandt said.

The Andrews Government is also urging the Federal Government to kick in a few bob; well, more than a few.

After a two-hour meeting between key ministers and gas chiefs, the prime minister said two producers had promised they would supply more into the domestic market but he gave no details of how much supply or when it would be made available.

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