Skip to main content

Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 197 asked in the Legislative Council on 29 March 2018 by Hon Peter Collier

Parliament: 40 Session: 1
Answered on 29 March 2018

      197. Hon PETER COLLIER to the Minister for Regional Development:
I refer to the Albany wave farm.
      (1) Can the minister confirm that the state will not receive any revenue from the sale of electricity exported from Carnegie Clean Energy's Albany wave project?
      (2) Can the minister confirm that none of the electricity exported from Carnegie's Albany wave project will be used to power homes in Western Australia as Carnegie has no off-take agreement with Synergy and cannot be a provider of electricity to residential homes in the south west interconnected system?
      (3) Has a business case for the $15.75 million funding to Carnegie been completed to justify the investment? If yes, will the minister table the business case; and, if no, why not?
(4) What was the basis for the decision to allocate $15.75 million to this project?
I thank the member for the question.
      (1) This is extraordinary given that the former minister put out press release after press release about his support for Carnegie Clean Energy and wave energy back in 2009 and 2010 and seemed to understand that the purpose of co-investment by the state was to drive a new technology. That is what happened when the previous government continued the funding, which I must say started under Labor, and continued to co-invest with CETO 5. Of course, we know that the technology has to move on. It started in Fremantle. It then moved to Garden Island. Now is the time to go into the big seas off Albany to try out the potential of this technology. Yes, Carnegie will receive the proceeds of any power sold during the trial. I want to point out to the Leader of the Opposition that Carnegie is investing $25.6 million into this project. In fact, the ratio of investment from the private sector into this project is higher than it was in the one that the previous government put out media release after media release about —
Hon Peter Collier: For five megawatts; what's yours—one megawatt?
Hon ALANNAH MacTIERNAN: Do you actually know how much energy is being generated at the Garden Island one, because I think, my friend, you will find it is actually less than one megawatt.
Hon Peter Collier interjected.
The PRESIDENT: Order! I just want to say that it is not debating. You have asked your question; the minister is trying to provide a response. You might let her provide the response.
      (2) As explained earlier in the week, Carnegie will use the merchant arrangement as it is proposing to do with its solar farm development in Northam. It does not need a power purchase agreement with Synergy or anyone else.
      (3)–(4) The decision to invest in a wave energy technology development project followed a comprehensive request for proposal and a valuation process.