Hunter could be caught-short by early power station closures
The reports of early coal-fired power station closures in the region should trigger accelerated diversification efforts for the Hunter warns Hunter Joint Organisation.
The Hunter Joint Organisation (JO) is a collaborative body that brings together the ten councils in the Hunter region to provide a united and local voice for our communities.
According to the Hunter JO, warnings from Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) Executives to expect closures to occur soon, alongside recent writedowns for the region’s largest energy and coal producers, sends a clear signal that economic risks are accelerating.
“The time to respond to these risks is now,” Hunter JO Chair and Mayor of Cessnock, Cr Bob Pynsent said today.
In response, the Hunter JO is calling on state and federal government to fast-track investment in the region to make sure local families are not left exposed to changes occurring more quickly than anticipated.
Key investments include a commitment to the $15m needed for the Hunter 2050 Foundation to drive new investment and preparedness programs as well as fast tracking the Hunter REZ and Special Activation Precinct initiatives.
Cr Sue Moore, Chair of the Hunter JO’s Regional Economic Transition Standing Committee and Mayor of Singleton noted, “We need this investment to drive opportunities in new energy, agribusiness and defence.”
“There is no reason for the region to miss a beat as our energy sector changes. Yet right now, we could be in a bit of trouble if things move quickly, as the AEMO have suggested, and we aren’t ready.”