Guy Barnett,Minister for Energy
Renewable energy is perhaps Tasmania’s greatest economic opportunity for the next decade, with our Battery of the Nation pumped hydro plans, new wind farm projects and now a potential bigger second interconnector set to create thousands of jobs and inject billions into the Tasmanian economy over the coming years.
Tasmania has what the rest of the country needs and Battery of the Nation represents one of the most reliable and cost-competitive solutions for meeting Australia’s demand for affordable, reliable and clean energy.
The Australian Energy Market Operator has confirmed that a larger 1,500 megawatt interconnector is viable and would unlock Tasmania’s renewable energy potential, which according to the latest independent economic modelling for Project Marinus, estimates up to $6.5 billion will be injected into the Tasmanian economy and create 2,400 jobs over the future years to come.
The Australian Government stands shoulder to shoulder with the Tasmanian Government providing up to $71 million to progress the projects, and a commitment to negotiate an underwriting deal for the first phase of Battery of the Nation.
To ensure Tasmanians benefit from these new jobs, we are working with the Australian Government who have committed $17 million to provide fee-free training in priority skills for Tasmanians to ensure we have the highly skilled workforce to build and maintain pumped hydro to realise our renewable energy opportunities.
Importantly, Tasmanians come first, with our Tasmania First Energy policy we are focused on delivering Tasmanian residents and businesses the lowest regulated electricity prices in the nation and being 100 per cent self-sufficient in renewables by 2022 and we are on track.
The Government will also ensure Tasmanians only pay their fair share for what is strategic national infrastructure benefiting the nation.
The Hodgman majority Liberal Government’s number one priority is to create jobs, grow the economy and protect the Tasmanian way of life. We have a plan to achieve this and it’s clear that plan is working.