The ambitious Snowy 2.0 hydroelectricity electricity generation and storage project has been approved by the Morrison Coalition Government.
The Coalition has committed funding of up to $1.38 billion, as reported by ABC News. Snowy 2.0 will see a new underground power station built in the remote Snowy Mountains of NSW.
The project will supply 2,000 MW of dispatchable electricity, as well as energy storage. At full capacity it will supply 175 hours of energy storage, or 350,000 MWh. That’s enough to power 500,000 homes at peak demand.
Snowy 2.0 set to boost grid and reduce energy bills
The project, managed by the Snowy Hydro company, now moves to early works stage. However, it will take several years to reach completion.
Building on the existing Snowy Hydro scheme, Snowy 2.0 will link Talbingo and Tantangara reservoirs in Kosciuszko National Park.
This is the first major energy venture under the Government’s Underwriting New Generation investment program. The program is controversial because it doesn’t rule out coal-fired power investments.
Snowy Hydro says the full Snowy 2.0 scheme will cost between $3.8 billion and $4.5 billion. The company will supply the remaining funds itself.
The project will create around 2,400 jobs and 5,000 related jobs across the region.
Government funds second Bass Strait interconnector
The Morrison Government has also announced $56 million funding for a second Bass Strait interconnector. This will link Tasmania with mainland Australia’s electricity grid.
A report says the proposed 1,200 MW interconnector will unlock new electricity generation and energy storage in Tasmania. It will also make the National Electricity Market more reliable.
As a result the Tasmanian and Victorian economies will receive a $1.6 billion boost. The interconnector will also create 1,400 jobs according to government projections.
This is part of a plan to make Tasmania the ‘Battery of the Nation’.
Meanwhile, a solar farm in northern Tasmania is helping the Apple Isle edge closer to its 100 per cent renewable ambitions. The 831 KW solar plant in northern Tasmania is one of the state’s largest commercial solar power projects.
Snowy 2.0 part of government’s climate solutions
Prime Minister Scott Morrison also announces a $2 billion Climate Solutions Fund. He says he is seeking “meaningful, practical, sensible, responsible action on climate change”.
However, the fund has been attacked by the Clean Energy Council (CEC) and Climate Council (CC) for its lack of funding for renewable energy like solar panels and battery storage.