Great Lake was a series of wetlands around a smaller freshwater lake before it was dammed in 1967. With a surface area of 176 sq km it is Australia’s largest permanent natural freshwater lake. Lake St Clair, about 50km west, is Australia’s deepest natural lake, and the combined Lake Pedder-Lake Gordon system, in the world heritage-listed west coast, is the country’s biggest man-made water storage.
These lakes are the main storages for the Hydro Tasmania network, which can generate 9,000 gigawatt hours of renewable energy. Tasmania’s annual requirement is about 10,800GWh.
In an ordinary year, Davy says, another 1,000GWh was provided by two Hydro-owned wind farms, Woolnorth, off Tasmania’s north-west coast, and Musselroe, in the north-east. The balance is purchased from mainland providers through the Basslink cable. Or it would be, if the cable hadn’t broken in December.
By Calla Wahlquist; more at The Guardian, 30 April, 2016