Australia

Interconnector gets major project status

A proposed interconnector between South Australia and NSW will save small and medium businesses thousands of dollars, the SA government says.

A proposed interconnector expected to deliver cheaper and more reliable electricity between South Australia and NSW has been granted major project status.

The energised $1.5 billion interconnector would save small and medium businesses several thousands of dollars each year, SA Energy Minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan said.

"The SA-NSW interconnector also delivers an average $66 savings for households and will deliver a raft of renewable energy projects and hundreds of local jobs along its proposed route," he said on Thursday.

"South Australia currently only has interconnection with Victoria which puts us at the end of the line and vulnerable to the type system risks that saw the entire state blacked out in 2016."

Major project status clears the way for more detailed consideration of the plan along with environmental, social and economic assessments.

Thursday's announcement was welcomed by ElectraNet chief executive Steve Masters, who said the elevated status highlights the significance of the project.

"This announcement is an important milestone for this project, which will be the first interconnector built between any Australian states in 15 years," he said.

"(The project) will reduce power prices, improve energy security and support the transition to a lower carbon economy."

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