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Second power link on agenda

A second inter-connector cable across Bass Strait will be on the agenda when the Premier, Will Hodgman, meets the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, this month. Following December’s BassLink outage, the Minister for Energy, Matthew Groom, told State Parliament: “The Tasmanian Government remains committed to pursuing the case for a second Basslink inter-connector, but it must be recognised as national infrastructure, and Tasmania must not be left to foot the bill. Making the case … will be hard and it must be recognised as a longer-term project.” The issue was raised at a Council of Australian Governments meeting on 1 April. Meanwhile, BassLink has pinpointed damage to the existing cable at 90.467km from the Tasmanian coastline and its repair ship Ile de Re has returned to the site. The company now predicts a return to service date in June. Disappointing recent rainfall saw Hydro Tasmania’s storage levels fall to 13.6 per cent on 11 April. Temporary diesel generation is being phased in under the State’s Energy Supply Plan and a Trent gas-generator refurbished in Dubai has been reinstalled and switched on at Bell Bay.

5 April 2016, Tasmania’s Stories Edition 170

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