Power is trending back upward and we expect we'll see the market return to pre-COVID-19 rates and back to its upward trajectory.
The latest energy news from around the country:
Installing solar during lockdown had its challenges, but our team evolved to follow social distancing and work with our clients to follow their own OH&S procedures. We are pleased with how our installation team has managed this change across Australia and New Zealand. The silver lining for those who want to be more sustainable and create their own power on site? The Federal Government has announced a list of measures that can improve the ROI for a solar installation.
The fall of Hazelwood Power Station
Hazelwood Power Station's eight chimneys, which soared 137 metres above the Latrobe Valley town of Morwell for more than half a century, have been demolished in a series of controlled explosions. Thousands watched online while hundreds gathered across Morwell to view the demolition from a safe distance with cars lining the Princess Freeway to get a better view. The chimneys were built in the 1960s at the brown coal-fuelled power station which was shut down in March 2017. The plant's closure followed a bushfire in the summer of 2014, which spread to its coal mine and burnt for 45 days. Hazelwood Power Corporation was fined $1.56 million a few weeks back for putting employees and nearby residents at risk by failing to prepare for the fire.
NEW SOUTH WALES & ACT
Project NEO concept
Finally, a solar, wind and hydrogen “baseload” power plant that can replace coal-fired plants? This could be a first for Australia and located in NSW under a multi-billion dollar plan pitched for the state. Dubbed “Project NEO”, the huge proposal would see up to 1,000 MW of combined wind, solar and hydrogen fuel cell generation capacity deployed in New South Wales, delivering continuous power to the state. The $3.5 billion proposed project could see the delivery of a zero-emissions “baseload” supply of electricity to the New South Wales grid and aims to transition a range of energy-intensive industries to running on 100 per cent renewables by 2027.
Energy Queensland's budget to be slashed by $1.1B
The Electrical Trades Union Qld NT (ETU) has responded angrily to the latest Australian Energy Regulator’s (AER) determination to slash Energy Queensland’s budget used for vital maintenance. The AER determination will see $1.1B in revenue slashed from the body’s forward budgets for the years 2020- 2025, a move which could leave workers, communities and businesses exposed to potentially unsafe electricity infrastructure. The union also took aim at the dysfunctional National Energy Market (NEM), describing it as a farce and no longer fit for purpose.
South Australia sets revised renewable target
The South Australian energy minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan has set himself the firm goal of getting the state to net 100 per cent renewable electricity before 2030, not some time in the 2030's as previously stated. South Australia is the leader for renewable electricity generation across Australia, with half of the state's electricity being produced via wind and solar.
A new interconnector between Tasmania and mainland Australia prioritised
Under the Federal Government's recently announced JobMaker plan, the Marinus Link (a second connector between Tasmania and the mainland) will be fast-tracked, unlocking Tasmania's renewable energy potential and aiding in the economic recovery of the COVID-19 pandemic. This project is one of 15 that will be prioritised by state and Federal governments, totalling $72 Billion in investment and creating 66,000 jobs.