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$600M should be spent on batteries, not gas

The $600 million the Morrison government plans to spend on a new gas peaking power plant at Kurri Kurri in the Hunter Valley would be much better spent on battery storage.  

The government announced today [1] that it would spend more than half a billion dollars of taxpayers’ hard-earned money on a gas plant that will probably operate only one week a year. [2] 

That sort of money would buy seven batteries the size of the one the South Australian government installed to firm its energy supply in 2017,” Nature Conservation Council Chief Executive Chris Gambian said. [3] 

Instead of lumping taxpayers with a $600 million white elephant, they could leave a legacy of more than 700 MW of clean, on demand capacityAs a practical engineering solution, the government’s announcement it just doesn’t add up.   

This announcement is nakedly political, timed to occur just a few days before the Upper Hunter by-election. 

Once again, the federal Coalition has put short-term political opportunism and the interests of their fossil fuel donors ahead of the long-term interests of Australians and the climate. 

Scott Morrison is spending money on fossil fuels like a drunken sailor. The problem is that taxpayers and the climate will be left with the hangover long after he last left politics.”  

References  

[1] Federal government will spend $600 million on new Kurri Kurri gas plant in the NSW Hunter Valley, ABC, 18-5-21 

[2] Hunter Valley gas plant ‘would only operate a week a year’, SMH, 13-5-21 

[3] The original installation in 2017 was the largest lithium-ion battery in the world at 129 MWh and 100 MW. 

 

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