The Conference is aimed at engaging with local stakeholders and to promote awareness of the Illawarra Renewable Energy Zone (IREZ) registration of interest process which closes on 22 July 2022.
The NSW Treasurer and Minister for Energy, Matt Kean MP, made promises to me on the use of local steel for renewable energy infrastructure when we negotiated the passage of the Electricity Infrastructure Investment Bill 2020 through the NSW Parliament – which is now the law of the land.
Part of that agreement for NSW Labor support for the bipartisan passage of that legislation was a solemn pledge to increase local steel content is in renewable energy projects across the state and to develop a hydrogen hub in the Illawarra.
In the Illawarra when we shake hands on a deal, we expect it to be honoured in full.
It is time for the Treasurer to get keen on delivering on his pledges.
It has been 589 days since the legislation passed the Parliament and the Treasurer has had recommendations on his desk since February this year.
Most Australians would be shocked to know that we are importing wind turbine towers into a port next door to Australia’s biggest steelworks instead of making them right here.
We have all the key assets – major energy users, port and transport links, and most importantly, a highly skilled workforce - to help build the renewable energy projects and infrastructure for a low carbon economy.
Tomorrow’s Illawarra Energy Conference will show that we as a region are ready to rock and roll to help build the renewable energy future of New South Wales.
It’s also a timely opportunity for Matt Kean to finally deliver on his promises to the Illawarra.