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Diesel generators could cost $48m a month

THE state opposition has warned the use of diesel generators will cost up to $48 million a month, but the government says the true cost won’t be known until Basslink is back up and running.

Hydro dam levels have dropped to 17.3 per cent, down from 18.3 per cent a week ago.

Six diesel generators are already in the state, and a further 18 are in Melbourne awaiting shipment. All up, they will generate 100MW of power and will be up and running by the end of March.

Energy Minister Matthew Groom said the government was securing another 100MW of diesel generators, which could be running by the end of April.

“The temporary generation that has now been committed to, together with the Tamar Valley Power Station at full capacity, will exceed the full import capability of Basslink,” Mr Groom said.

“The additional temporary generation currently being sourced together with the announced major industrial load reductions is equivalent to another large power plant,” he said.

Labor leader Bryan Green said Tasmanians could face a bill of $48 million for use of the diesel generators.

Mr Green said the “astronomical costs” dwarfed the costs that would have been associated with running the Tamar Valley Power Station earlier.

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