The South Australian Liberals has released an energy policy as part of a plan to fix the state economy, provide job certainty and relieve household cost pressures.
The Liberal Energy Solution focuses on:
- More affordable electricity
- More reliable renewable energy, empowering consumers
- Much better value for taxpayers
- Developing stronger connections between South Australia and the National Electricity Market (NEM)
Two key elements of the Solution are a $200 million interconnection fund to improve connectivity with the National Electricity Market, and a $100 million household battery program.
State Liberal Leader, Steven Marshall, said providing better interconnection with the NEM will increase network stability and drive down prices.
“Empowering South Australians who have invested in rooftop solar, and encouraging more people to install solar panels, will take pressure off the electricity grid and lower household bills,” Mr Marshall said.
“The Liberal Energy Solution will provide means-tested grants averaging $2,500 to facilitate the installation of batteries in 40,000 homes, putting South Australians in control of how they buy, sell and produce electricity.
“We are going to back South Australians who want to take charge of their electricity generation and consumption.
“Greater interconnection will enable us to export more of our renewable energy when the sun is shining and the wind is blowing, and import reliable baseload energy when we need it.”
The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) said it was important that the Liberal Party has reaffirmed its support for development of new gas supplies in SA.
But APPEA’s SA Director, Matthew Doman, said that support was at odds with the SA Liberals continued support for a 10-year moratorium on the use of hydraulic fracturing to develop gas resources in the South East of the state – a policy which has no basis in science.
“South Australians have long benefitted from the safe, sustainable production of natural gas in the North East and South East of the state, and it is vital this continues to enjoy bipartisan political support,” Mr Doman said.
“The onshore gas industry can continue to provide jobs and investment in regional communities, royalties for the Budget and new sources of energy for our state.
“The local gas industry will continue to work with all sides of politics and community to help secure reliable, affordable energy supply for South Australians.”
Mr Doman said APPEA also welcomed the Liberal Party’s decision to step away from state-based renewable energy targets, a position the association supports.