Queensland Minister for Energy Mark Bailey
North Qld Already Getting New Power Stations
Victor P Taffa
Minister for Energy Mark Bailey says the Federal Government is trying to inflict higher electricity prices on North Queenslanders with a back to the future thought bubble to build a new coal-fired power station.
Mr. Bailey said industry and energy experts like the Australian Industry Group and Bloomberg New Energy Finance have already criticised the plan saying electricity prices could double if new coal-fired power stations are built.
“With the start of a large scale renewable industry under the Palaszczuk Government, North Queensland is getting its own power stations, with 21st century technology producing affordable, clean energy.”
“North Queensland is benefitting from a boom over the next year and a half as a raft of new clean energy power stations are built and come on line at Kidston, Lakeland, Clare, Collinsville and Mount Emerald.” Mr. Bailey said.
“$380 Million Mount Emerald Wind Farm creating 150 direct jobs during construction will generate enough output to power a city the size of Mackay.”
“There’s also FRV’s 100MW Clare Solar Farm near Ayr, MSF Sugar’s 24MW bagasse generation plant at its Tableland Mill, Genex’s Kidston 50 MW Solar Project and pumped hydro for baseload plus Edify’s 58 MW Whitsunday Solar Project to name only a few.”
“They are part of more than 680MW of privately funded renewable energy projects currently in the works delivering $1.5 Billion of new investment to Queensland and more than 1,200 direct jobs, mostly in our regions.” Mr. Bailey said.
“North Queensland currently has two large-scale hydro facilities Kareeya and Barron Gorge which together provide over 150 MW of renewable energy capacity. A third major hydro facility is proposed for North Queensland through the Kidston Project, which could deliver 250 MW of pumped-storage hydro-electric power to the region.”
Mr. Bailey said Queensland also continues to benefit from one of the youngest and least emissions-intensive fleets of coal-fired generators in the nation.
“The important role of baseload generation remains.” Mr. Bailey said.
“Given the existing and ample supply of electricity generators, the falling cost of renewables and huge taxpayer cost to construct and run a new coal fired power station it’s clear that maintaining the State’s existing coal-generation fleet while adding more renewable energy options to the mix is the right way to take the State’s regional economy forward.”
“There is simply no need for new coal fired baseload generation in North Queensland.” Mr. Bailey said.
“For three years, when Tim Nicholls was Treasurer, the LNP (Liberal National Party) inflicted 43% electricity price surges and ignored North Queensland. The Palaszczuk Government has stabilised electricity prices and we don’t want to see them skyrocket again like they did under the LNP.”
“LNP are advocating unachievable projects because they don’t understand the modern energy market of 2017 and Queensland’s existing energy mix.” Mr. Bailey said.