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Australia needs long-term planning, not ‘knee-jerk’ action to tackle SA blackouts, professor says

The ABC’s Joseph Lam reports (26.3.17) on experts’ observations made at a World Science Festival panel discussion held in Brisbane, examining energy security and power supply in Australia.

‘No-one should have been surprised by the recent blackouts in South Australia because the warning signs had been there for months, researchers told the World Science Festival in Brisbane.

‘The Securing Australia’s Energy Future panel at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) heard the crisis had been in researchers’ sights for months and what was now needed was long-term planning and a strong framework, not a “knee-jerk” reaction.

‘University of Queensland’s Energy Initiative director Chris Greig said blackouts in South Australia finally put the government and media spotlight on problems researchers knew would come during the transition to renewable energy.

‘Enquiries were made into hydro pumps, megawatt batteries and coal-fired power stations — all of which were just a knee-jerk reaction to an event, Professor Greig said. He said one of the problems we have in Australia is that the government tends to focus on one thing at a time.’

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