The Weekly Advertiser Horsham
Coalition’s alternative for transmission lines
Victoria’s Liberal-nationals Coalition has proposed an alternative route for transmission lines designed to free up western Victoria’s potential as a renewable-energy engine room.
The State Opposition wants to reroute a Western Victorian Transmission Network from Bulgana near Great Western to Sydenham via Mortlake and Lara.
It also wants to upgrade the capacity of the line to 500kv for the entire distance of the project and upgrade Bulgana Terminal Station to ‘future proof’ power-generating opportunities in the Wimmera, Mallee and Western District.
Ausnet, the company responsible for upgrading electrical infrastructure for the Western Victorian Transmission Network, has already confirmed its preferred 190-kilometre corridor for the network – from Bulgana to north of Ballarat to Sydenham.
It narrowed down the corridor, identifying it as ‘the least constrained’, after shortlisting options in February.
But the route has been highly contentious, generating considerable opposition from Central Highlands communities.
The State Opposition claims its alternative route for the transmission lines would ‘secure affordable, reliable and renewable energy in Victoria’.
Its plan also includes – • Directing Vicgrid to establish a Competitive Evaluation Process through which the transmission project and all future transmission projects would be planned and costed. • Tasking the Energy and Water Ombudsman Victoria – together with the Australian Energy Infrastructure Commissioner – with investigating what options could be available to affected landowners to address legitimate interests and concerns. • Capitalising on more renewable-energy opportunities in western Victoria limited by ‘old’ electrical infrastructure designed to transport power to instead of away from the region. • Projects in pipeline, page 10.