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Renewed push for Port Augusta's proposed solar plant after Clean Energy Finance Corporation change

2015-08-03 09:55:05

A community group advocating for a large-scale solar project in Port Augusta has plans to seize upon the Federal Government's changes to the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC).

The Government recently gave the corporation a directive to not invest in wind farms and household rooftop solar projects.

Repower Port Augusta spokesman Dan Spencer told 891 ABC Adelaide the group wanted to see investment across a broad range of renewable energy projects in the town, including a large-scale thermal solar plant.

"We will be reaching out and not just to the Clean Energy Finance Corporation but to the Federal Government and the State Government and saying, 'Look if you guys are wanting to invest in large-scale solar, here's one that could really help a community'," he said.

He said while funding the solar plant was "complicated", about $100 million would get it off the ground.

Federal Opposition environment spokesman Mark Butler said the CEFC was modelled on "green banks" operating in the US, Europe, China and South Korea.

He did admit there was "always an upside to certain markets being cut out" but said the suite of renewable energy policies put into place by Labor were "under attack".

Mr Butler said the Federal Government's directive was making it "impossible" for the CEFC to do its job.

"We are reaching a point in the technological curve where we would like to see more large-scale solar projects being built across Australia, including here in South Australia," he said.

While supporting the idea of a solar project in Port Augusta, Mr Butler said the project's future needed to be considered "bankable" by the CEFC's experts and not politicians.

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