A second Basslink cable is a fools pipedream which risks taxpayer money, and higher power prices for local consumers, and is also an admission that the government does not have a long term plan to deal with major industrials leaving, Greens Leader and Energy spokesperson Kim Booth MP said today.
“The Hodgman government and Hydro Tasmania should be focusing on providing affordable and cheap locally generated power to local mums and dads, rather than seek to continue on with their ridiculous off-shore empire building,” Mr Booth said.
“A second Basslink will not be the panacea to replace the major Industrial power consumers when their contracts are wound up. Yet clearly, the Minister Matthew Groom has no viable alternative plan to deal with that eventuality.”
“Significantly, a second Basslink goes against the recommendations of the independent Expert Energy Panel’s Final Report.”
“Tasmanians are still paying $93 million each year for the current Basslink’s cable rent, and are exposed to Hydro’s risky power retailing on the mainland.”
“Further, consumers are already paying for the $100-million losses over six years signed up for power purchases with Shenhua.”
“Hydro’s business case should be ensuring that locally derived clean, green energy must be first prioritised for Tasmanian households, small businesses, and to also attract off-shore investment who seek to leverage their corporate brands by accessing clean, green energy.”
“We also need to prioritise developing potential for electric and compressed air vehicles to replace imported fossil fuels, which is good common-sense for the environment and for the economy.”
“By pursuing this fools’ pipedream of a second Basslink, the Liberals are indulging in further reckless and risky expansion by Hydro, while leaving the Tasmanian public to carry the financial burden,” Mr Booth said.