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Tasmania could become ‘Australia’s battery’

20 April 2017 8:08 AM
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Tasmania could become ‘Australia’s battery’

PRIME Minister Malcolm Turnbull says Tasmania could become Australia’s battery under a pumped hydro energy plan.

Malcolm Turnbull brought a large present for Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman’s birthday - a plan to turn the island state into the nation’s battery.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency will work with Hydro Tasmania on a feasibility study to massively increase the capacity of its energy scheme, the Prime Minister announced on Thursday.

‘This is far more exciting than any birthday. This will place us as the renewable energy battery of the nation,’ Mr Hodgman told reporters in Launceston.

The premier said it had long been his vision to cement Tasmania’s place as the renewable energy storage centre of the nation.

ARENA will look at how to increase the energy output from Tasmania’s hydro power system and also 13 potential new pumped hydro storage projects, which could more than double the system’s capacity.

It is already doing a feasibility study on a large expansion of the Snowy Hydro scheme in NSW to boost energy storage in the national electricity grid.

‘We recognise as the energy system changes, you need the ability to back that up - to store it or to provide the backup power with gas,’ Mr Turnbull said.

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