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Tasmania energy crisis: Minimum 30pc safe level imposed


Source: ABC, 22 June 2016

The Tasmanian Government has ordered an increase to the minimum operating level of the state's dams to head off a repeat of last summer's energy crisis.

In 2012, Hydro Tasmania allowed storage levels in dams to drop below 25 per cent for the first time.

Until that year, the government-owned company had been operating a preferred minimum level of 30 per cent of capacity.

But with an eye to maximising profits during the period of the carbon tax, Hydro Tasmania dropped the storage level by 5 per cent, to a new floor of 25 per cent.

Speaking in Hobart on Tuesday, Tasmania's Energy Minister Matthew Groom said he had instructed Hydro Tasmania to revert to the old safe minimum, and the lower level since 2012 had been a mistake.

"We've made it clear to Hydro Tasmania that we expect them to be doing everything they can to rebuild the storage levels to above the pre-2012 prudent water management level," he said.

"That is, a 30 per cent level on the 30th of June. And we've made that clear to Hydro Tasmania."