Workers in the Hunter and Central Coast are set to benefit from the powering up of renewable energy projects in the regions, with registrations of interest now open for the Hunter-Central Coast Renewable Energy Zone (REZ).
Treasurer and Minister for Energy and Environment Matt Kean said the REZ will connect multiple energy generators and storage projects across the regions, which will help industry thrive and create the low carbon jobs of the future.
“This new REZ will ensure the Hunter and Central Coast remain the powerhouse of New South Wales, with 60 per cent of the State’s homes, businesses and industry already powered out of these regions, ” Mr Kean said.
“The Hunter-Central Coast REZ will provide cheap, reliable and clean electricity for the homes and businesses of NSW, while supporting new job creation as we shift to a low carbon future.
“The NSW Government has the nation-leading policies and plans in place to deliver on our commitment to halve our State’s emissions by 2030 and achieve net-zero by 2050.”
Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter Taylor Martin said there are already 13 renewable energy and battery storage projects in the Hunter and Central Coast, which are approved or progressing through the planning system.
“The Hunter-Central Coast REZ is a key part of our State’s Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap, which is expected to deliver $32 billion in private investment, and create 6,300 construction and 2,800 ongoing jobs by 2030,” Mr Martin said.
“The NSW Government is committed to supporting job creation in the regions, and is inviting renewable energy operators and large energy users to register their interest in being part of the Hunter-Central Coast REZ.”
Parliamentary Secretary for the Central Coast Adam Crouch said the ROI is asking renewable energy projects and businesses with large electrical loads to register their interest in being part of the REZ.
“The NSW Government is focused on making sure new energy infrastructure is built in places where the community wants it, and the Central Coast is ready to welcome the renewable technology of the future,” Mr Crouch said.
“Extensive and meaningful community engagement is at the core of the NSW Government’s REZ program, with the Hunter-Central Coast REZ expected to take several years to design and develop.”
Member for Upper Hunter Dave Layzell said the REZ will support the development of the Hunter Hydrogen Hub, which will result in some of the cheapest green hydrogen in the world.
“The Hunter-Central Coast REZ is a fundamental part of our Electricity Infrastructure Roadmap, to build NSW into an energy superpower, and will provide a huge boost to the State’s clean, affordable and reliable electricity supply,” Mr Layzell said.
“Planning, designing and building new electricity infrastructure is complex and requires a detailed understanding of the Hunter region. The NSW Government is committed to engaging closely with the local community and stakeholders every step of the way.”
The Energy Corporation of NSW (EnergyCo NSW) is in the early stages of planning the Hunter-Central Coast REZ and the registration of interest (ROI) will help to inform the timing, capacity, design and location of the Hunter-Central Coast REZ.
REZs are modern day power stations bringing together low-cost solar and wind generation with transmission and storage to produce cheap, clean and reliable electricity.
The call for registrations of interest in the Hunter-Central Coast REZ will close on the 4th of February 2022.
For more information on the Hunter-Central Coast REZ and the ROI process, visit https://energy.nsw.gov.au/renewable-energy-zones