Greens release plan to phase out Hazelwood and Coal

Friends of the Earth has welcomed the extra detail released yesterday by The Greens on how they propose to bring about the closure of the Hazelwood power station.

It maps a viable pathway to see the rapid and complete closure of the ageing Hazelwood plant, and also makes positive commitments on the proposed HRL power station and possible future coal exports.

Media Release November 4, 2010
Friends of the Earth

Environmental group Friends of the Earth has welcomed the extra detail released yesterday by The Greens on how they propose to bring about the closure of the Hazelwood power station.

"This is the most visionary climate policy we have seen in the build up to the state election" said FoE campaigns co-ordinator Cam Walker. "Not only does it map a viable pathway to see the rapid and complete closure of the ageing Hazelwood plant, it also makes positive commitments on the proposed HRL power station and possible future coal exports".

In terms of achieving a rapid phase out of Hazelwood while driving the creation of energy from renewables, the Greens propose a four tiered approach:

Firstly, through using the Environment Protection Act to set a timeline to shut down each of the eight 200 megawatt units at Hazelwood sequentially over four years.

Secondly, through a large scale 'feed in tariff'  to drive further investment in renewable energy to allow the creation of 1,200 megawatts of peak power supply.

Thirdly, through implementing significant measures to improve energy efficiency and minimise the waste of energy.  

And finally, through the creation of a Demand Management Project Tender to reduce demand on the grid, especially in peak hour times such as during mid summer heat waves.

"Significantly, the Greens are also proposing using the EPA Act to create policy which would  prohibit the development of new coal power stations - including the HRL dual coal/ gas proposal currently before the EPA.”

"There is regular speculation that Victoria will develop a coal export industry in future.  Any party which is serious about climate change must rule out any development of such an industry. The Greens have declared their intention to  amend the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act to prohibit the mining of coal in Victoria where the coal or derivative products are to be exported".

"Taken collectively, this mix of measures will allow for a rapid and complete replacement of the ageing and dirty Hazelwood power station while also greatly increasing the number of green jobs available in this state. This announcement puts the Greens well ahead of current commitments from other parties".

“The ball is now back in the Coalition and Labor parties’ court to rule out new coal fired power stations and coal exports, and reveal their detailed plans on how they will phase out all of Hazelwood in the next term of Government” he concluded.

Further comment: Cam Walker 0419 338 047