Solar thermal still on radar for Port Augusta

A public forum on the theme ‘Making Solar Thermal Happen’ is being hosted by the Repower Port Augusta Alliance in Adelaide next week. 

The forum features guest speakers including Dr. Keith Lovegrove, Director of IT Power Group and widely regarded as Australia’s foremost expert on Concentrating Solar Thermal power systems. 

Gary Rowbottom and Elizabeth Zyla from the local Repower Port Augusta group will also be presenting, and Jenny Bourne from the local group will be co-chairing the event along with Gemma Weedall from CLEAN SA. 

Mr Rowbottom said the aim of the forum is to widen public awareness and support.

The event commences at 6pm in the Allan Scott Auditorium, Hawke Building, City West Campus of UniSA on North Terrace. 

“Hopefully (we can do that) to the point of having more people talk and write to politicians saying they would like to see this happen and why,” Mr Rowbottom said.

“Also, with the mix of presenters, we would expect to be able to have a factual basis as to why this is a good project for Australia (and Port Augusta) and how it can be achieved on an economic basis.

We are also hoping to set up some direct meetings of with politicians while, in particular, Dr Keith Lovegrove is in Adelaide for this event and could attend along with alliance members.

The presentations will be followed by Q&A panel with audience questions to the panel of presenters. 

It is understood there will be representation from a number of politicians present, including the Hon. Mark Butler, Shadow Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water.

Mr Rowbottom is hoping Mr Butler will be enlightened with the group’s presentations.”

The push to build CST in Port Augusta didn’t grow from here,” Mr Rowbottom said.

“Port Augusta was selected as a technically ideal spot by those elsewhere in Australia with that level of knowledge - we (Port Augusta) just happen to be the biggest beneficiaries if we can get this to happen - and therefore should be front and centre in trying to achieve that.”