IPRA media statement on Hazelwood protest action

10 Oct 2010

IPRA media statement update pm 101010

Protest action today organised by environmental extremist groups had no impact on International Power Australia (IPRA)’s ability to maintain power supplies for Victoria from its Hazelwood power station.

IPRA’s Group Manager for Corporate Affairs, Mr Jim Kouts, said that today’s protest attracted very limited support.

“Victoria Police estimated around 100 people gathered outside the power station – less than a third of the number at a similar event 12 months ago.

“International Power has always respected the rights of groups and individuals to express their views. However, today’s low key, sparsely attended protest suggests that Victorians are more interested in a sensible and mature debate about the transition to a low carbon future than the cheap slogans and simplistic arguments that tend to be bandied around by extremist groups.”

Mr Kouts said it was very much “business as usual” for Hazelwood today.

“Hazelwood power station and the adjacent mine supply up to 25 per cent of Victoria’s energy needs and is a major employer within the state’s low cost, reliable baseload electricity supply system.

“We are pleased that the protest did not interfere with our work in maintaining reliable electricity supplies for Victoria. The Victoria police, with support from our security staff and contractors, have done a very effective job in managing this small group of protesters to ensure that our operations were not affected,” Mr Kouts said.

“We would also like to commend the work of so many Hazelwood employees who have given of their time to defend our business and support the industry today.

“Hopefully the vocal minority of primarily metropolitan-based environmental activists will now show the industry and the Latrobe region some respect and enter into a mature debate on how we can make the transition to a low carbon economy.”

IPRA media statement on Hazelwood protest action