Transmission infrastructure strategy for NSW

The New South Wales Government has announced it will develop a transmission infrastructure strategy.

Energy Minister Don Harwin made the announcement at Energy Networks 2018 in Sydney this morning.

“It’s time to take a new view on transmission in new south wales,” he said.

“To attract investment in new generation and network infrastructure, we need a clear plan.

“The goal of the strategy is straight forward – to ensure new south wales can access the low-cost power generation it needs.

“The strategy will investigate what future transmission requirement may be needed, identify what market barriers need to be removed, so that we get new private sector generation in this state.”

The NSW Government has identified three potential priority energy zones: New England, Central West and South West.

Minister Harwin said these zones will form the foundation of the strategy.

“These zones can help to unlock the state’s $80 billion pipeline of new generation projects. The result of this would be a more competitive wholesale market, and a market delivering least-cost energy to NSW consumers.

“This strategy will ensure the state has enough energy supply into the future.

“This transmission strategy is about NSW owning the future. It is about ensuring that any new transmission infrastructure delivers benefits to energy consumers and our regional communities.

Mr Harwin said the state’s current transmission infrastructure was primarily built 50 years ago to service the state’s fleet of coal-fired generators.

“This infrastructure has served us well and the government has no intention of taking actions that would precipitate the premature closing of existing coal-fired generators,” he said.

“But the assets are ageing and new infrastructure requires up front and early planning. We must manage this transformation, rather than expect it to sort itself out. It won’t.

“There will be more infrastructure, more diversification and more transformation and we must prepare for it now.”