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Energy Minister Matt Keans awkward energy slip-up

NSW Treasurer and Energy Minister Matt Kean has apparently failed to take his own advice on reducing power consumption during recent shortages.

Lights at Mr Kean’s electoral office in Hornsby were reportedly left on day and night despite it not being in use.

It comes as the country faced major energy shortages over the past week with warnings of imminent blackouts.

Australians were asked to conserve energy – particularly during the high consumption evening periods.

“We’re asking office blocks to turn off their lights if they’re not being used,” Mr Kean said at the time.

According to 2GB, the issue at Mr Kean’s office was the result of a wiring issue.

Perrottet Kean Mitchell Dominello Media Alert
Camera IconMr Kean delivered the state budget this week with a focus on renewable energy generation. Credit: News Corp Australia, NCA NewsWire/ Gaye Gerard.

Federal and state governments along with the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) stepped in last week to avoid blackouts on the energy market that has since been returned to normal.

“We’ve got good generation in the system this morning. We had some close calls, but it’s a tribute to everyone involved,” federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen told Channel 9 on Thursday.

“I want to thank AEMO and the regulator and all my state and territory colleagues, we worked really closely together to keep the lights on.”

Mr Bowen explained the biggest issue had been outdated coal-fired power stations breaking down and leaving the grid short on energy generation.

“We’ve got a bumpy winter because we don’t have enough electricity generation in the system, not enough renewables, not enough storage of renewables and not enough transmission,” he said.

Parliament House Canberra
Camera IconFederal Energy Minister Chris Bowen said more generation had been pumped into the energy market following interventions from government and regulators. NCA NewsWire / Martin Ollman Credit: News Corp Australia

Green energy generation was a main feature of NSW’s most recent budget delivered by Mr Kean on Tuesday.

It included $1.2bn in funding to support transmission and generation infrastructure, including creating renewable energy zones.

Mr Kean has been a lead driver of moving NSW away from coal and towards renewable energy, which he says will not only reduce emissions but deliver billions for the state’s economy.

“These commitments are not just about avoiding more record bushfires, droughts and floods but also about underwriting our prosperity as our trading partners go to the green goods of the future,” he said.

The Treasurer’s office has been contacted for comment on the lighting issue.

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