PRIME MINISTER:
Welcome to the first meeting of our Regional Ministerial Taskforce.

It’s vitally important that every part of Australia benefits from the economic growth and the jobs that our national economic leadership is delivering.

We have three quarters of our exports come from Australia’s regions and they cover the whole vast expanse of our nation.

PRIME MINISTER: 

Good morning. Today I’m taking national leadership to resolve this gas crisis. 

Australians are entitled to expect they will have access to the gas they need and at prices they can afford, whether it's for their homes or in their businesses. Thousands of jobs depend on secure, reliable and affordable gas. 

It is not acceptable for Australia shortly to become the world's largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, to not have enough gas for its own families and its own businesses. 

The Turnbull Government and the gas industry have today agreed on measures that will help deliver cheaper and more reliable energy to Australian households and increase gas supplies for businesses.

The gas industry is a key part of Australia's prosperity and has a social licence with the community. Households rely on affordable gas supplies to their homes and businesses need reliable energy to support thousands of jobs across the country.

PRIME MINISTER:

Good afternoon. We’ve just finished a meeting with east coast gas producers. They have given us a commitment – a guarantee – that gas will be available to meet peak demand periods in the national electricity market. The implementation arrangements are going to be developed with the market bodies and the other industry participants and we’ll be meeting again in a month.

The Turnbull Government will start work on an electricity game-changer: the plan for the Snowy Mountains Scheme 2.0.

This plan will increase the generation of the Snowy Hydro scheme by 50%, adding 2000 megawatts of renewable energy to the National Electricity Market - enough to power 500,000 homes.

In one hour it could produce 20 times the 100Mwh expected from the battery proposed by the South Australian Government, but would deliver it constantly for almost a week (or 350,000 Mwh over seven days).  

PRIME MINISTER: The Snowy Hydro – what an extraordinary achievement. This was the result of the vision and the courage of the generation that won the Second World War. They defended our freedoms, saved us and they came home and built this.

These are big dreams in these mountains; real courage, a belief in the future, a confidence in Australia.

BEN FORDHAM:

Prime Minister good afternoon.

PRIME MINISTER:

Good afternoon, Ben.

BEN FORDHAM:

Thank you for taking the time to give us a call and say g’day. The Snowy Hydro Scheme 2.0.  Not a lot of detail, how much is it going to cost? How are we going to pay for it, how long will it take to build?

PRIME MINISTER:

RAF EPSTEIN:

Prime Minister, good afternoon.

PRIME MINISTER:

How are you Rafael?

RAF EPSTEIN:

I’m okay. The feasibility study to turn the Snowy essentially I guess or parts of into a battery – is that definitely going to happen or do you wait for the study?

PRIME MINISTER:

Well, the project is fully designed. What we are talking about is a project, a pumped hydro project which will add 50 per cent to the capacity of the Snowy Hydro scheme.

CARRIE BICKMORE:

Please welcome Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull.

PRIME MINISTER:

Thank you.

CARRIE BICKMORE:

Great to have you here. Certainly has been a big day. Did you choke on your popcorn as you watched that press conference happen today?

PRIME MINISTER:

DAVID LIPSON:

Prime Minister, thanks for joining us on Lateline.

PRIME MINISTER:

Great to be with you.

DAVID LIPSON:

Your plan for the Snowy 2.0 will add another 2,000 megawatts to the grid, at least, how much of that will be pumped hydro?

PRIME MINISTER:

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