Snowy Hydro Expansion Great For Jobs But Highlights Renewable Energy Hypocrisy

I welcome this news that Snowy Hydro will shortly commence a feasibility study into several sites across the Scheme which could support new large-scale, pumped hydro-electric energy storage and the thousands of jobs it will bring to Eden-Monaro.

The Snowy Mountains Scheme was a visionary nation building Labor Government project. It was the birthplace of Multiculturalism in Australia and our region welcomed workers from over 30 countries into the community. The Scheme also built our civil engineering capacity and became one of the engineering wonders of the world.

The plans to double the size of the Snowy Hydro Scheme, along with new wind farm projects planned for our region, is delivering on my vision to make Eden-Monaro the renewable flagship for the nation, generating full time, well paid and rewarding jobs.

I also intend to work with all our renewable energy companies, and our tertiary education and TAFE sector to build on this industry cluster by creating a centre of excellence in our region for renewable energy in research and vocational training.

Sadly the Turnbull government doesn’t have an overarching plan for our national energy market and today’s announcement is an admission that the Coalition government’s talk of the failure of renewable energy was all lies. Ironically this new plan will depend on a power arrangement with South Australia’s wind farms to assist with the pumping process.

Under this Coalition government renewable energy investment has fallen off a cliff, an 88% decline. Our nation needs policy certainty and a national plan to encourage private investment back into renewable energy.

Last week the National Farmers’ Federation added their voice to the growing chorus in the energy sector urging the Turnbull Government to consider adopting an emissions intensity scheme (EIS) for the electricity sector.

Labor has always stood for a bipartisan, market based approach in dealing with this issue and we are prepared to support such a move by the Government, should Malcolm Turnbull find the courage and conviction to act. Media Release

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