More than $3 billion in renewable energy projects in Tasmania could transform the state into a “battery storage” resource for the nation.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull was in the state this week an announced an initial $2.5 million in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency to assess a raft of proposals from Hydro Tasmania which would significantly increase Tasmania’s energy production and storage capacity.
It would reverse the nightmare scenario of 2016, when cuts to the Basslink cable and record low dam levels prompted an energy security crisis in the state.
Hydro Tasmania is proposing to:
– Replace the Tarraleah power scheme with a new facility which would produce 40 percent more power
– Upgrade the Gordon Power Station with an extra turbine
– Develop Mersey Forth-1, Mersey Forth-2, Great Lake and Lake Burbury hydro projects,with capacity of around 500-700 MW each, and an alternative of nine small scale sites totalling 500MW.
A new interconnector on the Basslink cable to the mainland is also been assessed, a project which would cost $1.1 billion.
“There is an opportunity for this state to double the amount of renewable energy it produces,” Mr Turnbull said at the Trevallyn Power Station.
“This is a great nation-building story. The sooner we pinpoint those opportunities the better. It will need to involve new infrastructure including power stations and a second Basslink interconnector.”