Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Avani Terraces - Greenway
Life is looking up

Rattenbury looks at possibility of intervention on Actew outage

By Charlotte Harper - 12 January 2017 8

ACT Climate Change and Energy Minister Shane Rattenbury (right) with the ACT's first energy consumer advocate, Eileen Newmarch. Photo: Charlotte Harper

ACT Minister for Climate Change and Energy Shane Rattenbury is looking into whether it is possible for him to intervene to prevent ActewAGL from going ahead with its plan to cut power to dozens of homes in Hughes and Hawker tomorrow, a day when Canberra’s temperature is set to soar to 38 degrees.

Speaking to media during the announcement of a new energy consumer advocate to represent consumers in energy policy and regulatory consultation processes, Mr Rattenbury said he was in contact with ActewAGL clarifying exactly what their policy position was in relation to tomorrow’s planned power outages.

“Tomorrow is a particularly hot day for Canberra,” the Minister said.

“I think most people are sort of looking at this and kind of going is it common sense to be doing it on a day like today?

“I need to get to the bottom of what their policy is and look at whether we need to review that in light of the increasing number of hot days we are seeing in our community.”

He said he didn’t believe he had the capability to intervene.

“That’s something I’m having a look at at the moment,” he said.

The newly appointed energy consumer advocate, Eileen Newmarch, agreed the planned outage was problematic for many Canberrans.

“It’s an Actew decision that I don’t believe I have any input into at this stage,” she said.

Ms Newmarch’s position will complement the existing arrangements for ACT consumers. The ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal remains the main avenue for resolution of energy consumer disputes, whereas the new energy consumer advocate will represent consumers in energy policy and regulatory consultation processes.

A financial counsellor, former public servant and member of the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal energy and water team, Ms Newmarch will engage with the ACT’s lower income households, small businesses and non-government organisations.

The ACT Government and Energy Consumers Australia provided $50,000 each to jointly fund the advocacy position for two years. The role operates under a consortium arrangement led by ACTCOSS and including Care Financial Counselling Inc, the Canberra Business Chamber Small Business Taskforce, the Conservation Council of the ACT and SEEchange.

Members of the public can reach Ms Newmarch at eileen.newmarch@carefcs.org or by phoning 6257 1788.

UPDATE: The ACT Government issued the below media release at 5.30pm on Thursday, a few hours after our original story …

ACT Government response to ActewAGL planned power outages

Minister for Police and Emergency Services Mick Gentleman and Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability  Shane Rattenbury have issued the following statement regarding ActewAGL’s planned power outages tomorrow

“As always, the health and safety of the Canberra community is the priority for the ACT Government. With temperatures expected to reach up to 37 degrees on Friday, the ACT Chief Health Officer Dr Paul Kelly has issued a statement this afternoon reminding Canberrans to keep cool and hydrated, said Minister Gentleman. 

“In light of the forecasted temperature, the ACT Government asked ActewAGL to review their planned power outages in parts of Hawker and Hughes which are scheduled for this Friday 13th of January.

“ActewAGL have advised the government that the work scheduled for tomorrow is essential, particularly in light of forecast storms which could present further risks and unplanned power outages if the maintenance works tomorrow do not go ahead.

“ActewAGL have also advised the government that residents have been informed of the planned outage and that the ACT Emergency Services Agency are ready and taking all precautions, they are working with ActewAGL to ensure that health of known vulnerable residents in the affected areas is not compromised,” concluded Mr Gentleman.  

Minister for Energy and Climate Change Shane Rattenbury added:

“The ACT Government has an ‘Extreme Heat Plan’ which allows the government to intervene in planned power outages in certain circumstances. The plan can be activated where the mean temperature over a 24 hour period is equal to or greater than 28C over three consecutive days.1 Advice from the Bureau of Meteorology indicates this will not be the case so ActewAGL has decided to carry out the work as planned,” said Minister Rattenbury.

“In cases like these, while the temperature is uncomfortable, ActewAGL must also weigh up the risk of not carrying out the planned work and exposing the community to unplanned power outages if forecasted storms do take place. We have the Extreme Heat Plan to help guide these decisions. 

“Unfortunately, climate change means that Canberrans will face more very hot days like tomorrow. While it is unfortunate that ActewAGL has to carry out essential works on a 37 degree day, it is also crucial that any potential storm hazards are removed to keep the community safe. 

“The ACT Government urges all Canberrans to keep cool, protect yourself from the sun and keep an eye out for members of the community that may be vulnerable in hot weather,” concluded Minister Rattenbury.


 The mean temperature is the calculated mean of the Bureau of Meteorology daily forecast maximum from one day and the subsequent night’s minimum temperature.

What’s Your opinion?


Post a comment
Please login to post your comments, or connect with
8 Responses to
Rattenbury looks at possibility of intervention on Actew outage
1
dungfungus 2:08 pm
12 Jan 17
#

Good luck with that!

Rattenbury wouldn’t close the Mugga Lane land fill down when it was reeking putrid odours a couple of years ago, in fact he extended its life for another 30 years.

2
bj_ACT 4:34 pm
12 Jan 17
#

dungfungus said :

Good luck with that!

Rattenbury wouldn’t close the Mugga Lane land fill down when it was reeking putrid odours a couple of years ago, in fact he extended its life for another 30 years.

Surely you wouldn’t suggest that Rattenbury has a history of blocking unpopular things near his own Electorate and supporting their move down South where it has no impact on his or his parties Electoral chances. Such purely coincidental things as the increase in rubbish at the Mugga Lane Tip, the Uriarra Solar Farm relocation to Williamsdale, moving Public housing tenants out of the inner North down to Kambah & Greenway or some of the other pollution causing developments recently setup at Hume.

3
bj_ACT 2:00 pm
13 Jan 17
#

bj_ACT said :

dungfungus said :

Good luck with that!

Rattenbury wouldn’t close the Mugga Lane land fill down when it was reeking putrid odours a couple of years ago, in fact he extended its life for another 30 years.

Surely you wouldn’t suggest that Rattenbury has a history of blocking unpopular things near his own Electorate and supporting their move down South where it has no impact on his or his parties Electoral chances. Such purely coincidental things as the increase in rubbish at the Mugga Lane Tip, the Uriarra Solar Farm relocation to Williamsdale, moving Public housing tenants out of the inner North down to Kambah & Greenway or some of the other pollution causing developments recently setup at Hume.

Interesting to read today that Rattenbury is having some concerns with the Plastics plant at Hume (I guess it’s never too late to jump on board). Let’s hope he looks at a few other issues affecting resident down South.

4
Chris Mordd Richards 1:20 am
15 Jan 17
#

Oh the green hate is just so delicious on here recently, you know your doing things right when this many people complain about you this much. 🙂

5
bruce_lord 10:51 am
15 Jan 17
#

Chris Mordd Richards said :

Oh the green hate is just so delicious on here recently, you know your doing things right when this many people complain about you this much. 🙂

Wow what a weak response to issues that really effect some people.

I wrote last week about how I didn’t believe the rubbish tip smell issues in the suburbs until I smelt it for myself. I am going to guess that you don’t live in williamsdale with a new solar farm to spoil your view or in Kambah with unhappy relocated public housos from Civic causing grief for existing residents.

The Greens saved school closures in their inner city heartlands but Green Lighted school closures throughout Tuggeranong, but I’m guessing again this didn’t effect you. If you’re going to play the man and not the issues raised, you should be able to accept that there is some valid reasons for Green hate in parts of canberra.

6
dungfungus 8:43 pm
15 Jan 17
#

bj_ACT said :

bj_ACT said :

dungfungus said :

Good luck with that!

Rattenbury wouldn’t close the Mugga Lane land fill down when it was reeking putrid odours a couple of years ago, in fact he extended its life for another 30 years.

Surely you wouldn’t suggest that Rattenbury has a history of blocking unpopular things near his own Electorate and supporting their move down South where it has no impact on his or his parties Electoral chances. Such purely coincidental things as the increase in rubbish at the Mugga Lane Tip, the Uriarra Solar Farm relocation to Williamsdale, moving Public housing tenants out of the inner North down to Kambah & Greenway or some of the other pollution causing developments recently setup at Hume.

Interesting to read today that Rattenbury is having some concerns with the Plastics plant at Hume (I guess it’s never too late to jump on board). Let’s hope he looks at a few other issues affecting resident down South.

I don’t think he gives a tinker’s cuss about what happens to voters in Tuggers.

The point made by a writer in his letter to the CT editor today pointed out that the carbon footprint created by the processes in the proposed plant alone will seriously damage the ACT’s quest for carbon neutrality by the current target date.

And this doesn’t include the pollution that the trucks that bring in the 200 tonnes a day create (only a very small amount will be sourced locally), not to mention the damage they make to ACT roads.

7
dungfungus 7:48 am
16 Jan 17
#

Chris Mordd Richards said :

Oh the green hate is just so delicious on here recently, you know your doing things right when this many people complain about you this much. 🙂

I think you meant “Green hypocrisy”, didn’t you?

8
Chris Mordd Richards 1:44 am
17 Jan 17
#

bruce_lord said :

Chris Mordd Richards said :

Oh the green hate is just so delicious on here recently, you know your doing things right when this many people complain about you this much. 🙂

Wow what a weak response to issues that really effect some people.

I wrote last week about how I didn’t believe the rubbish tip smell issues in the suburbs until I smelt it for myself. I am going to guess that you don’t live in williamsdale with a new solar farm to spoil your view or in Kambah with unhappy relocated public housos from Civic causing grief for existing residents.

The Greens saved school closures in their inner city heartlands but Green Lighted school closures throughout Tuggeranong, but I’m guessing again this didn’t effect you. If you’re going to play the man and not the issues raised, you should be able to accept that there is some valid reasons for Green hate in parts of canberra.

Actually, I lived all over southside growing up and still do. I’ve lived in Wanniassa, 2 different places in Kambah, Holder, Greenway, Monash, Chisholm, Weston Creek, Richardson, and these days I live in Lyons. Essentially the majority of my 25 years living in Canberra have been spent 95% living on the southside, which I know far better than the north of Canberra, although I know my whole city decently well, I always have been a southsider here. So I am very familiar with issues i Southern Canberra and most of my Canberra friends to this day all live on the southside as well. I went to Trinity Christian School in Wanniassa from K-10. As kid I rode all over south canberra to and from soccer matches a junior ref. I could still navigate the canberra back paths on the southside almost blindfolded to this day I know the routes so well.

Thanks for just dismissing me as an inner city resident with no clue though, you demonstrated exactly the Green Hate I was referring to, and your comment is actually 100% wrong about me. As a current resident of Murrumbidgee, my focus atm is on supporting Caroline le Couter improve issues in this part of the southern electorates and further south. It is years of Labor neglect of the south that is the cause of the problems you allude to, not Greens neglect. I stand by my comment 100%. At least Shane is looking to do something about this maintenance during mass heat issue, where was Mr Barr or one of the Labor assembly members to say the same?

Related Articles

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2017 Riot ACT Holdings Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
www.the-riotact.com | www.b2bmagazine.com.au

Search across the site