Strong national energy policy a must for investment certainty in the USG

The three Upper Spencer Gulf Mayors are calling on all candidates vying for the seat of Grey, political parties and potential South Australian senators to commit to a strong, credible and evidence-based national energy policy to provide stability and certainty for
investment in the Upper Spencer Gulf.

Chair of the Spencer Gulf Cities Association and Port Pirie Mayor Leon Stephens says the Upper Spencer Gulf is rapidly emerging as the ‘powerhouse’ of the nation.

“We have had a number of academic and industry experts advise us that as the cost of renewable energy continues to fall and storage technologies improve, the advantages of the Upper Spencer Gulf in producing low-cost, low-carbon energy will become a competitive advantage for the region and for industries that are energy-intensive”.

Port Augusta Mayor Brett Benbow notes whilst the Upper Spencer Gulf has a competitive advantage for generating renewable energy, it is important that Government energy policy provides stability and certainty for investment.”

“We are one of the first regions in Australia to transition from coal to renewables. It has been an incredibly difficult journey and we are not over the line yet”, explained Mayor Benbow.

“We need to get the policy settings right.”

The Mayors’ call for a strong, credible national energy policy that will lower prices, improve reliability, reduce emissions and encourage new investment echoes a similar position taken by many industry leaders across the country.

Whyalla Mayor Clare McLaughlin added that the wide range of renewable energy technologies proposed across the Upper Spencer Gulf – including concentrated solar thermal, pumped hydro, solar photo-voltaic, ‘big’ batteries, wind and hydrogen – makes the region an attractive location for further investment and opens up opportunities for research and testing new energy technologies.

“It is a very exciting time for the Upper Spencer Gulf, but to make sure our communities come out of this transition stronger, more resilient and more economically diverse, we really need a strong partnership with Government to help us deliver on this priority,” said
Mayor McLaughlin.


Contact: Mayor Leon Stephens, Chair of Spencer Gulf Cities Mob: 0417 080 961
Mayor Clare McLaughlin, Whyalla City Council Mob: 0417 846 025
Mayor Brett Benbow, Port Augusta Council Mob: 0419 423 777