Saturday, July 13, 2024

NSW rolls out road upgrades to support renewables growth

NSW regions from Newcastle to Dubbo and surrounds will benefit from a $128.5 million 2024–25 Budget investment to upgrade roads for drivers and allow for the transportation of components for renewable energy projects.

The funding will also support preliminary planning for a logistics precinct at the Port of Newcastle, where large and heavy components will be stored and then loaded for delivery to project construction sites.

“The Hunter is central to the transformation of our energy system and investments like these will ensure our region continues to prosper into the future,” said Minister for the Hunter, Yasmin Catley.

“Port to Project will upgrade our road network, making it safer for all drivers, and create a logistics hub at Newcastle Port.

“Transforming our energy market is a challenge but it’s one the NSW Government takes seriously. We are investing in significant infrastructure and programs to ensure the Hunter remains an energy powerhouse.”

The initial road upgrades will prioritise the route from the Port of Newcastle to the Central-West Orana Renewable Energy Zone near Dubbo. A portion of the route will also be used for transportation to the New England Renewable Energy Zone.

Individual developers will need to ensure vehicle movements can be accommodated on any additional local roads to their project sites.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Jenny Aitchison said the upgrades will enable transportation of critical components required for the construction of new renewable infrastructure from Newcastle to the Renewable Energy Zones via the existing road network. The components will include wind turbine blades, batteries and transformers.

“Regional roads connect our local communities and this must be a vital consideration for all major infrastructure projects, including renewable energy projects.”

“Making this investment in the Port to Project transport route ensures they remain safe and secure for all road users,” she said.

“To build solar and wind farms and our new transmission network we’ll need trucks to carry their components to sites. Upgrading the roads ensures deliver can happen quickly and safely,” said Minister for Climate Change and Energy, Penny Sharpe.

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