SA missing out on the reliability of coal-fired power generation: MCA

THE on-going instability with electricity supply in South Australia highlights the need for stable, reliable electricity generation that is provided by coal in the eastern states, according to Minerals Council coal executive director Greg Evans.

Lou Caruana

South Australia has chosen to disproportionally rely on intermittent wind and solar power for electricity generation and this lack of energy supply diversity has exposed families and businesses to higher prices, supply instability and greater reliance on imported power, he said.

“Clearly these are not the ideal characteristics for the local economy which is seeking to establish major new energy intensive industries and to retain and expand existing businesses including steelmaking and mining,” Evans said.

“Contrary to the more alarmist assessments in recent days, there is no crisis in the National Electricity Market and the big energy consuming states of NSW, Victoria and Queensland who continue to have access to reliable and stable coal fired electricity are presently in an unchanged position.”

The unfolding South Australian situation however highlights what can happen with imprudent, politically driven energy policy options including extending the renewables share of the energy mix driven by subsidies, Evans said.

“Access to coal fired power is essential to ensure households, businesses, heavy industry, schools, hospitals and transport networks such as trains can all operate reliably and efficiently,” he said.

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