Australians want Liddell coal-fired power station shut down

The majority of Australians want the Turnbull Government to shut down the Liddell coal-fired power station, or as some call it ‘old lady Liddell’.

According to a ReachTEL poll commissioned by the Climate Council, Australians were asked to state what would happen in case the NSW station’s impending closure finally takes place in 2022.

The Federal Government is determined to keep the ageing facility up and running at a cost of about $1 billion. However, 77 percent of respondents felt that public money should not be channeled into the station to extend its life.

59 per cent of respondents chose introduction of a Clean Energy Target policy as the most preferred alternative. Ideally, this would encourage uptake of more renewable energy to replace the polluting coal-fired station.

Australians willing to retire ‘Liddell coal-fired power station’

Amanda McKenzie the Chief Executive of the Climate Council said the new poll shows that Aussies are realistic people.

“Given the choice of putting a billion dollar band-aid on old lady Liddell, or rolling out new lower cost, clean technologies – it’s a no-brainer,” she stated.

The findings by the Council also showed that new coal-fired power stations are twice as costly as wind, and more expensive than solar PV systems.

As a result, two-thirds of Australians (66%) want coal-fired power stations to be replaced with clean sources of energy.

In the poll, anti-coal sentiments were found to cut across diverse political party ages and references. About half of Liberal supporters (47%) and Labour supporters who are the majority at (82%), agreed that renewable sources must be used to replace Liddell.

Electricity bills will keep sky rocketing if Liddell remains operational

“The public has made its mind up on Liddell – and more broadly on the future energy direction of the country,” Ms McKenzie stated.

“Now it’s up to our elected leaders to listen and act.”

Majority of those polled (51%) felt that continued operation of the ageing power station would push up power bills. Residents of New South Wales were the most worried, with 55 percent of them predicting that energy prices would soar if Liddell remains open.

Moreover, 54 percent of Australians said they would have to slash their household budgets for holidays, groceries and entertainment, if energy prices rise.

2,176 residents from across Australia participated in the 20th September 2017 ReachTEL survey.

The Author

I took an interest in the Australian energy sector close to ten years ago and since then have monitored the trends, technologies and direction of the Australian Energy Market. I was drawn to the Australian solar market in 2008 and since then have worked heavily in the field. I am partnered with national and international solar energy companies, from manufacturers of solar panel and inverter technology, online software developers that introduce tools to quote, monitor and manage solar power systems and media organisations who like myself, closely monitor the solar and renewable energy sector.