Monday, 15 June 2020
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction. Will the minister please update the House on how the Morrison government is investing in the energy infrastructure we need to create jobs as we recover from COVID-19?
I thank the member for Braddon for his question. He knows, as we all do on this side of the House, that, coming out of COVID-19, a strong Australia means having access to affordable, reliable energy. As a farmer and small business owner, he also knows how important it is to streamline processes and get rid of red tape in order to encourage investment and jobs growth. That means that we can get on with investing in the energy infrastructure that is absolutely crucial for the future of this nation.
I note that the member for Braddon is a keen supporter of the Marinus Link project in Tasmania. He knows that projects such as that can encourage local jobs and investment in his electorate. Marinus Link will provide a second interconnector, alongside Basslink, between Tasmania and Victoria. In the process, it will bring down energy prices and will assure the reliability and security of our grid in southern Australia. But it will do much more, because in his region of north-western Tasmania it will create a jobs boom—3,800 jobs at peak for Marinus with up to $7 billion of investment.
We are getting on with the job of Marinus, just like we are getting on with the job for many infrastructure projects right across Australia. It's great to see, along these lines, that the New South Wales government has given its approval to the Snowy 2.0 project in the Snowy region. Not only will Snowy, like Marinus, drive down prices and keep the lights on, it will create a jobs boom in the Snowy region—up to 2,000 jobs at peak. Already, we see 500 jobs being created from the Snowy project, up to 850 by the end of the year. Indeed, 100 small businesses around the region are already benefiting from the Snowy project. Those are many small and family-owned businesses, like the Owerses' business—Phil and Yvette Owers—who run National Cranes and Engineering in the area. They're benefiting from the Snowy project. And there is James McMahon, the third generation to provide services to Snowy business.
On this side of the House we are getting on with the job, ensuring that we streamline the processes and get rid of the red tape so that we see the energy infrastructure we need in this country, in the Snowy region and in north-western Tasmania, because that will ensure a strong Australia as we come out of COVID-19.