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Plans to make Tasmania energy capital underway

The Australian island of Tasmania could soon be turned into the country's battery. The Australian Renewable Energy Agency will work closely with Hydro Tasmania in an attempt to turn the island into the nation's primary source of energy.

Will Hodgman, the Premier of the state of Tasmania, said that this was an incredibly exciting time for the island, placing it at the centre of the country's economy. 

"This is far more exciting than any birthday. This will place us as the renewable energy battery of the nation, he remarked," adding it has been his wish for a long time to make Tasmania the epicentre of energy production in the country. 

The study will take a close look at how Tasmania can increase its energy production using its hydro-power system. It also intends to look at the possibility of creating 13 new pumps to increase production. The agency is said to be contributing $2.5 million towards to the cost of the study. The project will run in conjunction with a study in New South Wales that is looking at expanding the Snowy Hydro scheme in a bid to increase storage in the national electricity grid. 

Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull commented on the project, stating that he recognises the need to develop new systems are the way we produce energy changes. "We recognise as the energy system changes, you need the ability to back that up - to store it or to provide the backup power with gas." 

He added: "The energy market is progressing, the evolution of it is very rapid, so I think the sooner we can see the opportunities here in Tasmania, the better."

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