Second Renewable Energy Zone Announced in Australia


The New South Wales (NSW) government has officially declared the second renewable energy hub in the United States as the Australian state plans to phase out its fleet of coal-fired power plants.

Hub is located in New England in the northeastern part of the state, and the New South Wales government has deposited $ 10.7 billion from the private sector in banks to fund the project, of which $ 78.9 million comes from state government funding. Thing.

The multi-billion dollar figure is more than double the previously announced $ 5.2 billion private sector investment in the country’s Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) in the Central West Orana region of western Sydney.

It is provided as part of the New South Wales electricity infrastructure roadmap and outlines five REZ plans to replace the state’s heavy reliance on coal, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the state’s electricity generation. doing.

Epoch Times Photo
April 22, 2018, Liddell Power Plant in the Hunter Valley Region, New South Wales, Australia. (AAP Image / Dan Himbrechts)

NSW had previously announced a goal of reaching zero net emissions by 2050 and halving emissions by 2030. Due to Australia’s overall rapid transition to renewable energy, coal-fired power could be depleted three times faster than originally expected.

Australia’s overall push to reduce emissions follows the report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which concludes that carbon dioxide is a major cause of climate change, a decision by the IPCC. It is controversial by peer-reviewed studies that question about. Do not consider the effects of solar energy.

The REZ is a highly regarded alternative to common power plants, bringing together energy storage such as solar, wind, and batteries all in one place. This allows you to take advantage of economies of scale and reduce overall costs, such as reducing the amount of transmission cables required.

James Hay, CEO of NSW Energy Corporation, said New England REZ has excellent renewable energy resources, including potential sites for “pumped storage”. Pumped storage power generation is a form of energy storage that involves pumping water into a higher elevation reservoir and releasing it to recycle energy as needed.

“REZ is the equivalent of a modern power plant, combining low-cost renewable energy with backup energy from storage and transmission to provide cheap, reliable and clean energy,” Hay said. increase. Said..

Unresolved concerns about rapid renewable rollouts

Concerns have been expressed about the use of slave labor in the renewable energy supply chain, in addition to the energy security reductions brought about by poorly planned transitions as the adoption of solar, wind and battery systems accelerates. I am.

Experts warn that the transition to renewable energy needs not be rushed. This was supported by the 2021 UK energy crisis, which saw wind turbine swath stagnation following record low wind speeds.

Due to the rapid energy shift, the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) enforces rules that require annual reporting to specific sectors on how to address the risks of slavery in the renewable energy supply chain. It came to be.

“Changes in procurement strategies and the need for large quantities of industrial products with sudden notices increase the risk of modern-day slavery,” said AHRC. “The move to renewable energy has revealed many areas where modern slavery supply chain risks are emerging for energy companies.”

This includes child slave labor in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. There are allegations that children are regularly injured and killed by the collapse of a tunnel during the mining of cobalt, an important material used in batteries.

Epoch Times Photo
On May 23, 2016, a child passed by a truck carrying rocks extracted from a cobalt mine at a copper quarry and cobalt pit in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo. (Junior Kannah / AFP via Getty Images)

China, which has been the focus of many reports of human rights violations, including the mass removal of Falun Dafa followers and the persecution of Tibetan Buddhists, has also found millions of Uighurs, Kyrgyz and Kazakh citizens. I made it a slave. To work in the production of solar cells.

Most of Australia’s renewable energy system supply comes from China, the world’s largest producer of solar panels, wind turbines and battery cells. This includes 90% of solar panels, as Australia has little or no unique renewable manufacturing capacity.

Almost half of the wind turbines tested at Australia’s largest wind farm It is cracked and needs to be repaired for several months.— Even though the operating period is less than 5 months.

Craig Kelly, a leader and parliamentarian of the Australian Party who was critical of New South Wales’ transition to Net Zero, emphasized the growing dependence on China brought about by the energy transition.

“The end result will be the transfer of wealth from Australia to the Chinese Communist Party,” he told The Epoch Times earlier. “It has to rely on us big batteries from China, more wind turbine parts. They all come from China.”

Daniel Kumerev

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Daniel Khmelev is a Perth-based Australian reporter working on energy, technology and politics. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics, physics and computer science. Contact him at [email protected]