Tuesday, 10 November 2009

King Island power play - $15m renewable energy program

Hobart Mercury
Saturday 7/11/2009 Page: 16

A PROJECT aimed at reducing King Island's reliance on fossil fuel for power generation has been boosted by Federal Government funding of $15 million. The Government awarded the funds yesterday to the commercial scale Renewable Energy Demonstration Program on King Island. Hydro Tasmania is leading a $45 million project that alms to reduce the 2.56 million litres of diesel used on King Island each year. The funding is part of a $235 million program for alternative energy projects.

Two projects in South Australia and one in Victoria also shared in the funding. The program supports the commercialisation of new renewable energy technologies to help deliver the Government's Renewable Energy Target of 20% by 2020. Resources and Energy Minister Martin Ferguson and Braddon Labor MHR Sid Sidebottom said the Bass Strait Islands Project being developed by Hydro Tasmania would integrate wind, solar and storage with biodiesel generation.

"This will provide baseload and peak power for King Island's mini grid system and reduce the island's reliance on diesel generators," Mr Ferguson said. "The project aims to reduce dependency upon baseload fossil fuel and will have technologies that integrate renewables into electricity grids." He said the energy project had the potential to refine technologies that would have wide application in rural or remote areas. "The program will deliver $810 million in renewable energy investment in Australia and deliver almost 80MW of new renewable generation." he said.