Networks welcome critical transmission investment

Energy Networks Australia has welcomed the NSW Government’s announcement of $1.2 billion to accelerate the development of transmission in Renewable Energy Zones (REZ) across the state.

ENA Acting Chief Executive Officer, Tamatha Smith said timely development of transmission was critical to ensure new, cheap renewable power could get onto the energy grid and delivered to customers.

“The current energy shortages and huge wholesale price increases have highlighted the importance of a more connected energy grid that can deliver more power to meet demand,” she said.

“Renewable generation is the cheapest generation but our grid is congested – much like a freeway without enough lanes. More transmission will enable more of that cheap, clean electricity to flow to where it is needed and more supply will help lower wholesale prices.

“There are however challenges getting this infrastructure built in a timely manner – including with financing for early works. It is hoped this Transmission Acceleration Facility will help address this.”

Ms Smith encouraged the NSW Government to consider ensuring proper social licence practices were also implemented through the work plan as part of the new fund.

“Networks know just how critical it is to work with communities to understand their needs and the challenges and opportunities they face when large scale infrastructure like new transmission developments are planned,” she said.

“We hope to see social licence and community engagement activities accommodated as part of the new fund.”