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Chamber welcomes announcement to build new electricity generation plant in the Hunter

Release Date: 27/04/2018
The Hunter Business Chamber has welcomed the announcement by AGL to build a 252 MW gas-fired electricity generation plant in the Hunter Region.
CEO Bob Hawes said this announcement is fantastic news for two reasons.
“Firstly, it keeps the investment and business in the Hunter – the business of power generation, the construction and operation jobs that go with a $400 million investment is good for the region.
“We understand AGL had options across the state to consider the placement of this piece of energy infrastructure and we’re pleased they have decided the right place is here in the Hunter. This is a vote of confidence that the Hunter is the right place to invest when it comes to the future power generation needs of the state and the nation.
“Secondly, it’s another piece in the part of the National Energy jigsaw that makes the post
Liddell picture clearer.
“The Chamber is not suggesting the state or the nation is yet out of the woods when it comes to ensuring long term reliability in energy supply and prices but this is a small step in the right direction.
“Australian businesses and households need to see improvements in energy affordability now and AGL is not the only player in this space and we shouldn’t forget that.
“Governments must continue to work towards getting the energy investment framework sorted. Energy security and affordability must be above politics and political point scoring if we’re to deliver greater certainty for investors and consumers.
“We continue to state the relative significance of this issue in the Hunter region cannot be understated given the energy requirements of our collective industries that in turn provide our jobs.
“We managed to navigate last summer without the disruption experienced in early 2017. However, we have at least three more summers before significant material benefit of energy generation projects that are in the pipeline will materialise.
“We have individual businesses in this region that consume and demand high amount s of electricity and gas and we must secure supply at a reasonable cost so that these users and the businesses that support them do not come under threat.

“Australian businesses are paying some of the highest energy prices in the world, which is crazy given Australia is blessed with strong reserves of natural resources, an abundance of sun and significant capability in solar, wind, energy storage, ocean energy, hydro power, geothermal and bioenergy.
“We also support calls for the NSW Government to relax the moratorium on exploration and extraction of coal seam gas given the capacity and capability this source of energy has to fill the potential supply void we face over the next five years.
“It doesn’t make sense that the country could potentially import g as at a competitive price when the enormous resource we possess lies dormant and underutilised,” Bob said.

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