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HomeNewsInternational NewsEight million Australians urged to turn off lights

Eight million Australians urged to turn off lights

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By Annabelle Liang

(BBC) – Australia’s energy minister has urged households in New South Wales – a state that includes the country’s biggest city Sydney – to switch off their lights in the face of an energy crisis.

Chris Bowen says people should not use electricity for two hours every evening if they “have a choice”.

However, he added he was “confident” that blackouts could be avoided.

It comes after Australia’s main wholesale electricity market was suspended because of a surge in prices.

Mr Bowen asked people living in New South Wales to conserve as much power as possible.

“If you have a choice about when to run certain items, don’t run them from 6 to 8 [in the evening],” he said during a televised media conference in Canberra.

Why is there a crisis?

Australia is one of the world’s biggest exporters of coal and liquefied natural gas but has been struggling with a power crisis since last month. Three quarters of the country’s electricity is still generated using coal. It has long been accused of not doing enough to cut its emissions by investing in renewables.

In recent weeks, Australia has felt the impact of disruptions to coal supplies, outages at several coal-fired power plants and soaring global energy prices.

Flooding earlier this year hit some coal mines in New South Wales and Queensland, while technical issues have cut production at two mines that supply the market’s biggest coal-fired station in New South Wales.

Around a quarter of Australia’s coal-fired electricity generating capacity is currently out of service due to unexpected outages and scheduled maintenance.

Read more.

MAKANA FERRY SCHEDULE

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