SA Premier, Two Faced, When It Comes To Revealing Cost Of Tesla Power Deal
How two faced can you get? Jay Weatherill the Labor Premier of South Australia was virtually salivating at the mouth as he cuddled up to US tech billionaire Elon Musk to announce a lithium battery power deal for South Australia.
This is the same Premier that got his state into a right mess when the SA State electricity network failed last year, resulting in businesses losing millions.
Mr. Musk’s company Tesla won a public tender in July from about 90 other bidders. It will build a 100-megawatt battery to store energy from French renewable company Neoen’s Hornsdale Wind Farm near Jamestown, 230km north of Adelaide.
Mr Musk won the contract after promising to build the giant battery in 100 days or it would be free. Although the contract start date is listed as July 6, the “100 days or it’s free” pledge starts only once a grid interconnection agreement has been signed.
Now Wetherill’s Government doesn’t want to tell the people of South Australia what the deal is costing.
The opposition said it was outrageous the state government could disclose what it paid Origin for gas, Caltex for fuel and Qantas for air travel, but could not say how much it was paying a foreign billionaire for a battery.
Experts claim that Weatherill and his Government have invested in a dud deal and that the investment will not deliver when “really needed”.
The contract between Musk’s Company and the South Australian government for the world’s largest lithium-ion battery hides the cost and key details, fueling claims the deal is a “marketing con” claims the Australian newspaper.
The contract says the grid-connected battery facility is to be commissioned and operational by December 1 but at what cost.
“The facility will provide services to maintain power system security, integrity and stability for the South Australian electricity network, prevent certain load shedding events, provide supply during critical peak periods and participate in ancillary services and wholesale electricity markets,” the contract says.
What has also not been disclosed is what happens if the batteries fail and the Tusk offering fails to deliver the backup needed if the main grid is unable to deliver for the State as it did in the past.
The contract value is “not disclosed” and the contract is “not disclosed in full as it contains confidential business information”.
“With every passing day Labor’s secret deal sounds more like a marketing con than a genuine plan to deal with South Australia’s electricity problems,” Liberal deputy leader Vickie Chapman said. “Jay Weatherill needs to be honest with the people of South Australia about how much public money he is handing over to a foreign billionaire.