NSW energy minister rules out government takeover of Origin Energy’s Eraring power plant

NSW energy minister rules out government takeover of Origin Energy’s Eraring power plant
  • PublishedDecember 7, 2023

Origin Energy has said it will close its Eraring power plant in 2025, but the findings of a review in September recommended the state government work with the provider to keep the plant open to shore up power supply.

The plant, on the shores of Lake Macquarie, meets 18 per cent of the state’s energy demands.

In July, Ms Sharpe did not rule out intervention to keep Eraring open.

In September, Premier Chris Minns said the government would enter talks with Eraring for a “temporary” extension of its operating life, prioritising short-term energy security over emissions reductions.

Ms Sharpe was questioned about Eraring during a Budget Estimates hearing on November 2 and her response to questions that were not answered during the hearings have now been released.

In response to a five-part question covering cost-benefit analysis, profitability assessments and acquisition and operating costs, Ms Sharpe gave a broad answer, ruling out any takeover:

Ms Sharpe also responded to a question centred on emissions.

“In the 2022–23 financial year, Eraring power station produced approximately 12 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent,” she said.

Ms Sharpe said current 2030, 2035 and 2050 emissions reductions objectives and projections “assume an Eraring closure date of 2025”.

“The 2030 and 2050 targets are informed by integrated emissions modelling covering all sectors of the NSW economy,” the minister said.

“This includes the electricity generation sector and what is assumed, at the time, for generator closure years.”

Ms Sharpe was unavailable for comment.

Origin Energy has told the ABC it is continuing to engage with the government, even though a takeover has been ruled out.

SOURCE: ABCNEWS

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