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As Tasmania ramps up renewable energy infrastructure investment, public and private sector leaders have underlined the need for more collaboration to secure the required skills, finance and project delivery capabilities

12 July 2018

Representatives from Hydro Tasmania, UPC Renewables Australia and GHD recently came together in Hobart to share their visions for energy development in the state.

According to Chris Gwynne, Hydro Tasmania Battery of the Nation Program Director, the retirement of coal generation is a massive opportunity for Tasmania.

“Tasmania is a renewable energy powerhouse and one of our key advantages is our existing hydro assets. There is significant potential to repurpose some of these hydro sites to provide storage, firming and balancing services to the National Electricity Market,” he said.

UPC Renewables Australia is developing wind farms in northwest Tasmania, at Robbins Island and Jims Plain, with a combined output of up to 1150 MW.

David Pollington, UPC Renewables Australia Chief Operations Officer, said the company was also looking at other sites around the state, but another interconnector between Tasmania and Victoria would be needed to fully realise the potential of the state’s wind resources.

“Projects like Robbins Island and Jims Plain, combined with the pumped hydro potential and Tasmania’s already enormous storage capability, are a realistic solution for Australia’s energy needs. This combination of resources can deliver affordable, low-emission and reliable energy for the future,” he said.

GHD is supporting UPC Renewables with approvals and engineering services for Robbins Island and Jims Plain projects.

“Our Tasmanian team comprises more than 110 people, who are proud to help accelerate the uptake of renewable energy in Australia. With many parts of Tassie well suited for pumped storage facilities, we are also drawing on our local and global power and dam engineering capabilities to support our clients,” said Sean Tucker, GHD’s Manager, Tasmania.