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Critical threshold for National Energy Policy


Release Date: 23/04/2018
 
The Hunter Business Chamber has echoed the sentiments of the NSW Business Chamber in welcoming the recent commitment of the Australian and State Governments to proceed with the final design of the National Energy Guarantee, but has stressed the importance of finalising arrangements in 2018.
 
“Australian businesses and households need to see improvements in energy affordability
now,” said Hunter Business Chamber CEO Bob Hawes.
 
“Energy security and affordability must be above politics and political point scoring if we’re to deliver greater certainty for investors and consumers,” Mr Hawes said.
 
“The ultimate measure of success of the National Energy Guarantee will be downward price pressure on the supply of electricity and natural gas.
 
“The relative significance of this issue in the Hunter region cannot be understated given the energy requirements of our collective industries who in turn provide our jobs.
 
“We managed to navigate last summer without the disruption experienced in early 2017. However, we have at least three more summers before any material benefit of energy generation projects that are in the pipeline will materialise.
 
“We have individual businesses in this region that consume and demand high amounts of electricity and gas and we must secure supply at a reasonable cost so that these users and the businesses that support them do not come under threat.
 
“Australian businesses are paying some of the highest energy prices in the world, which is crazy given Australia is blessed with strong reserves of natural resources, an abundance of sun and significant capability in solar, wind, micro-grids, energy storage, ocean energy, hydro power, geothermal and bioenergy.
 
“We also support calls for the NSW government to relax the moratorium on exploration and extraction of coal seam gas given the capacity and capability this source of energy has to fill the potential supply void we face over the next five years.
 
“It doesn’t make sense that the country could potentially import gas at a competitive price when the enormous resource we possess lies dormant and underutilized,” Mr Hawes said.



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