Two years on and no Illawarra Renewable Energy Zone declaration and no steel mandate

The Electricity Infrastructure Investment Act was introduced to assist in driving investment in renewable energy generation, along with storage and network infrastructure in NSW.

Amendments introduced by Member for Wollongong, Paul Scully, and NSW Labor added the Illawarra Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) and added a requirement to develop a local content plan.

Despite more than $43 billion of investment interest from 44 projects in the Illawarra REZ and the promise of a draft REZ declaration to be on exhibition this year the Illawarra waits.

Despite the Renewable Energy Sector Board Plan, which includes local steel content requirements, having been submitted to the Minister months ago the Illawarra waits.

“It’s been two years since the NSW Parliament passed legislation to support greater investment in renewable energy generation, transmission and storage but the Illawarra REZ hasn’t been declared which is holding back job-creating investments.

“In the face of growing pressures on energy generation and transmission infrastructure in NSW it is time the NSW Government got moving on the Illawarra REZ declaration and implemented the Renewable Energy Sector Board’s plan for local content”, Member for Wollongong, Paul Scully said.

“When I lobbied for and secured an Illawarra REZ it was to drive local investment and jobs but delays mean we are missing out on both.

“We were promised a steel mandate and the plan is there ready to go.

“We were promised a REZ declaration this year and the interest is there ready to go.

“The only thing missing is the NSW Liberals and Nationals Government taking the contribution that our region can make to securing clean energy future seriously”, Mr Scully said.

“The NSW Government left the Illawarra out of its original plans, but I successfully fought to have us included. I’ll continue to push for a steel mandate and an Illawarra REZ declaration because I am determined for the Illawarra to play a role in our clean energy future because it means lower emissions and more jobs.

“If we don’t get moving we risk supply interruptions as older generation assets are removed from the grid”, he said.

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