Chief Minister Adam Giles last week released a statement claiming that it would cost between $1.5 to $2 billion dollars to power Alice Springs with solar and claimed that any strategy for ambitious renewable energy targets in the Northern Territory is ‘irresponsible’.
“Unfortunately what is ‘irresponsible’ is the shonky modeling being used by Adam Giles to demonise renewable energy” said Louise Stanley, spokesperson for RePower Alice Springs.
“Giles conjured up the $2 billion costing by comparing his $75 million investment in ten gas turbines with an ill-conceived alternative of solar PV panels and enough battery storage to power the town for seven days. This is a ludicrous proposal given that there is an abundance of more cost-effective technological alternatives. No one is asking for an immediate replacement of gas with solar PV, and investing in seven days battery storage is unnecessary with the use of concentrated solar thermal or back up gas generators.”
“As alternative calculations by energy experts at Renew Economy show (http://reneweconomy.com.au/2016/northern-territorys-2-billion-scare-campaign-solar-75959) not only is this an irrational proposal to model, but the figures are also grossly overstated.”
“A transition to solar power is an important priority for our community which requires long-term planning. That is why RePower Alice Springs is calling on the NT Government to commit to a Solar Transition Plan for Alice Springs and a renewable energy policy for the Northern Territory.”
“Giles has been deliberately misleading the community to defend a questionable decision by his own government to sink money into new fossil fuel infrastructure. Meanwhile the world is embracing renewable energy and Alice Springs is missing out on the jobs, training and energy cost-savings that solar will unlock,” said Ms Stanley.