On March 14th, the SA government unveiled its plan for Energy Security. While there were some laudable measures — a $150 million Renewable Technology Fund to make renewable energy dispatchable, including 100MW of grid-connected storage (likely to cost $20 million) — there were some measures aimed at promoting and expanding the gas industry: a 250 MW gas generator ($350 million), an additional $24 million to encourage more gas exploration (why when we can’t burn existing reserves if we are serious about tackling climate change?).
What wasn’t made explicit, but was confirmed by the Minster for Energy & Resources, was the drive to open up the SE to fracking of gas.
This is something the farmers in the SE are dead set against, and the new 10% royalty fund is unlikely to persuade them. FoE believes the SA government should follow the example of the Victorians and ban any expansion of the fracking gas industry. Fracked gas is more carbon intensive than coal!
Come along to our AGM and hear Ann Dawe explain why it just won’t happen.
You may be wondering, as FoE Adelaide is wondering, why the government didn’t just spend three times as much on storage, and pocket the savings ($290 million) by not bothering with a new gas-fired plant.
[excellent detailed commentary on the reneweconomy website:
- Ex Hazelwood boss says solar + storage already cheaper than gas
- Baseload gas failure nearly pushed S.A. into another system black
- South Australia is “cock of the snoot” – but it still got issues
- South Australia covers its arse and its FCAS in new energy plan ]