Western Australian households, business and industry are facing the harsh reality that federal and state Labor governments are responsible for the energy crisis in our state. WA is dealing with the double-header of increasing costs of energy and a shortage of energy supply. Neither government has any answers to fix the problem.
As a stopgap, the government is using business and industry as the state’s energy battery by shutting down these businesses and industries during peak demand periods. At one point, Alcoa had to shutdown 25 per cent of its Kwinana plant to keep the lights and air conditioners on in Perth. Simcoa, in my electorate—the only silicon producer in Australia—is on notice to do the same thing. Business and industry are the ones that will keep the lights on and air conditioners running over summer this year.
Energy security is a national security issue, but Labor, both state and federal governments, are asleep at the wheel. AEMO has expressed concerns about the South West Interconnected System and that emergency support is needed. The latest report projects a shortfall of up to 345 megawatts.
As a result, our critical industries and businesses can have their power supplies reduced or cut and their amount of manufacturing or processing reduced or shut down at short notice.
As well, the Albanese government has used taxpayer funds to fund the Environmental Defenders Office to halt a project that would increase Woodside’s gas and energy supply for WA households and industry, as well as raising billions of dollars of export income.