Moore MP Shane Love MLA has lodged a Parliamentary petition calling on the Energy Minister to take whatever action is necessary to ensure the delivery of reliable power to businesses and residents in the Mid West.
Tabling two petitions on April 10 with 448 signatures relating to power in the Mid West and more specifically Mullewa, Mr Love said Mid West residents and businesses were fed up with paying for unreliable and expensive power.
“It’s not an unreasonable demand – residents want a reliable power supply so they can get on with their lives and their businesses,” Mr Love said. “More urgently, there are real health issues at risk here – vaccines have had to be dumped and there are concerns in households where medication has to be refrigerated.”
Mr Love said Parliamentary Questions had revealed that over the past five years, the power supply in Kalbarri, Perenjori and Mullewa failed to meet agreed benchmarks in terms of the frequency of outages and the duration of the outage.
“I can not comment on outage data for Dongara, Jurien Bay and other towns as I am still waiting for that information but we know that outages in Mullewa last nearly six times longer than Western Power’s target and the frequency of these outages is twice the benchmark, with power reliability deteriorating over the past two years,” Mr Love said.
“Energy Minister, Bill Johnston confirmed in Parliament on March 20 that Mullewa’s power supply was below the required benchmarks, adding that work was underway to address power supply issues in Kalbarri and Perenjori, and Mullewa would be next,” Mr Love added.
“The most lengthy outages often occur when there is a Total Fire Ban in place and I have asked that the Minister for Energy and Minister for Emergency Services review their procedures to enable the timely restoration of power.”
Mr Love said power outages were damaging the Mid West’s reputation as a tourist destination. “As a state we have promoted WA as the ‘Road Trip State’ and we want overseas tourists arriving in Dongara or Kalbarri for a crayfish dinner to remember these towns for all the right reasons, rather than being greeted by a dark tavern that is unable to serve food or drink.”