Snowy Hydro is launching a community insights campaign to better understand the social impacts of the Snowy 2.0 project.

The campaign seeks to engage and connect with community members across south-eastern NSW to gather insights, opinions, and experiences related to Snowy Hydro operations and the Snowy 2.0 project.

Through an online survey available at, we invite residents, stakeholders, and interested parties to share their perspectives and help shape the future of their communities. A series of focus groups, one-on-one meetings, phone surveys and community pop-up stalls will support the online survey.

“This campaign reiterates Snowy Hydro’s commitment to transparent and inclusive community engagement,” said Snowy Hydro CEO Dennis Barnes. 

“We value the input of our community members and recognise the importance of understanding their needs and concerns.”

The survey, which will be open until 5 May 2024, covers a range of topics, including community sentiment, perceptions of the Snowy 2.0 project, and suggestions for improving Snowy Hydro’s community engagement efforts. Participation is open to individuals aged 18 and above who reside or own property in the Snowy Monaro, Snowy Valleys, Towong, Bega Valley and surrounding local government areas.

“We encourage you to take part in this survey and contribute to the dialogue surrounding the Snowy 2.0 project and its impact on our communities,” added Mr Barnes. 

“Your feedback will be important in informing Snowy Hydro’s social impact strategy and community engagement initiatives.”

Throughout April, Snowy Hydro representatives will engage with stakeholders in key regional towns, fostering open conversations about Snowy Hydro’s operations and future priorities. The consolidation of survey findings is planned for June 2024, with a publication of key results expected in July 2024.

For more information or to participate in the survey, please visit

Additionally, feedback or inquiries can be directed to Snowy Hydro via phone at 1800 623 776 or email at




Engineering meets art on a grand scale, with Snowy Hydro CEO Dennis Barnes today announcing a new major sponsorship of the Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail (SVST).

The SVST partnership includes funding from Snowy Hydro for seven new sculptures and a school education program aimed at delivering artist-led sculpture workshops to more than 1,500 school children in the Snowy Valleys Region.

“Snowy Hydro is proud to take on the role of Major Partner of the Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail, a partnership that underscores our long-term, ongoing commitment to the local communities we operate in,” Dennis said.

“The Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail is celebrated for its eye-catching outdoor art installations throughout the picturesque Snowy Valleys region and our support will enhance the trail’s reach, making it more accessible and engaging for both residents and visitors alike. We hope it will also draw more tourists to the region, thereby benefiting the local economy.”

The seven new Snowy Hydro-funded sculptures will be leased and installed over the next two years adding to the 35 existing artworks located between Adelong and Tooma, including the historic towns of Batlow, Talbingo and Tumbarumba. 

A key element of Snowy Hydro’s exciting partnership with SVST is the School Education Program. This program will bring artist-led sculpture workshops to 14 primary schools in the Snowy Valleys Region, along with two schools in Cooma and the Adaminaby Public School. Students will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of art, creativity, and engineering through the added participation of Snowy Hydro engineers in the workshops.

Dennis emphasised the importance of the program, which aligned with Snowy Hydro’s education focus on science, technology, engineering and maths and engaging young people in activities that spark future careers.

“We believe that art and engineering go hand-in-hand, which is why they’re both core parts of our Next Generation Education Academy activities. Sculptures, like our hydroelectric projects, require a high level of engineering skill and creativity. 

“By exposing students to these artist-led workshops, we hope to inspire the next generation of engineers and artists right here in our local community.”

Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail Founding CEO & Artistic Director David Handley expressed that:“It has been a humbling privilege to work with the local communities across the Snowy Valleys to create the Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail as one of the most important cultural projects in regional Australia.  

“Snowy Hydro’s sponsorship means we are able to continue to deliver what we set out to do in providing the School Education Program for free to thousands of students across the Snowy Valleys, while building on the sculpture trail to offer visitors another reason to come back again and again to enjoy this stunning part of Australia.”

Snowy Hydro looks forward to working closely with the Snowy Valleys Sculpture Trail team and schools across the region to foster a deeper appreciation for art, engineering and innovation.




In the June update of the pumped-hydro expansion of the mighty Snowy Scheme, Snowy 2.0’s Alex Woschitzka explains construction progress at the massive Talbingo and Tantangara intakes. The project’s Quality Coordinator also checks in on the transformation of a narrow fire trail through steep terrain into a road suitable for heavy vehicles.

Significant progress has been made at the Talbingo intake, where water will exit the tailrace tunnel when Snowy 2.0 generates power. This is also where water enters the tunnel for pumping.

Construction teams have moved more than 310,000 cubic metres of earth to date, about half the total amount that will need to be moved. More than 24,000 metres of rock bolts have been installed and 8,300 square metres of shotcrete sprayed to support the wall.

As part of quality assurance, the shotcrete must be tested for compressive strength. Samples are taken from the truck and also cored from the face to ensure it meets the intended strength requirements. For the rock bolts, pull-testing is conducted to ensure they have been correctly installed, and meet the design and quality requirements. 

When completed, the total height of the Talbino intake excavation will be 104 metres, with about 31 metres of that below the water level. The concrete intake structure will be an impressive 50 metres in height.

Construction is well underway on an internal access road through mountainous terrain. With the help of Snowy 2.0 subcontractor Leed, a narrow fire trail will be widened into a six-kilometre road to enable heavy vehicles to access a rock emplacement area on Talbingo Reservoir.

Works began from both ends across very challenging terrain, achieving a major milestone recently when the two pioneering fronts joined across the Middle Creek cliffs. A temporary bridge with a 36-metre span has been installed across Middle Creek and is capable of supporting a fully-loaded 80-tonne dump truck.

In another milestone achieved in June, stage one earthworks have now been completed at the Tantangara intake. The first stage involved excavation of about 205,000 cubic metres of earth with a further 78,000 cubic metres of drilling and blasting earthworks expected in the next stage.

To support the excavation, more than 18,000 metres of rock bolts have been drilled and installed, and approximately 6,100 square metres of shotcrete sprayed. The excavation is currently about 26 metres deep and will be extended to a total depth of 55 metres.

Tantangara intake is where water will enter the headrace tunnel when the Snowy 2.0 power station is in generation mode. When in pumping mode, water will exit through the intake and fill Tantangara Reservoir. 




New data from the 2021 census has revealed that Country Universities Centres (CUCs) are leading the way in university student growth across regional NSW.

Over the past five years, university student numbers in NSW towns with CUCs grew by 24.7% compared with an average 5.4% for all non-metropolitan areas.

Snowy Hydro co-founded the very first CUC in Cooma in 2013 and remains an integral supporter of the higher education centre by jointly funding it together with Snowy Monaro Regional Council.

The CUC initiative enables regional and rural university students to study close to home in a campus-like environment with learning facilities, technology including access to computers, wifi, printers, video conferencing and support staff.

Snowy Hydro Acting CEO Roger Whitby said the long-running Cooma CUC partnership continues to be highly successful.

“CUCs are helping to stop the brain drain – they allow regional students to stay in their communities, have access to tertiary education in a supportive environment and ultimately provide local employers, including Snowy Hydro, with qualified workers,” Mr Whitby said.

“Typically there is a high drop-out rate with people studying online courses because they can feel isolated, so the CUC offers real benefits.”

Cooma has seen a university student increase of 64% over the last two census periods (2011-2021), compared with an average 17.5% for non-metro NSW. 

Following the success of the Cooma CUC pilot, a further five centres opened in Broken Hill, Goulburn, Grafton, Griffith/Leeton and Narrabri/Moree in 2018-19.

The network of centres has since grown to 20 regional communities across NSW, Queensland and Victoria with the additional support of the NSW Government and the Australian Government’s Department of Education, Skills and Employment through the Regional University Centres program.

Find out more about Snowy Hydro’s partnership with Country Universities Centre:

Students studying at university by locality

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2021 Census data 

CUC locations and year of openingIncrease 2011-2021Increase 2016-2021
Cooma (2013)* 64.1% 
Broken Hill (2018)22.8%
Goulburn (2018) 18.4%
Grafton (2019)32.3%
Griffith and Leeton (2019)33.8%
Narrabri and Moree (2019) 16.0%
CUC centre average increase24.7%
NSW university students – non-metro17.5%5.4%

*Only the Cooma CUC was operating during the 2016 Census.




Snowy Hydro’s Talbingo Reservoir and its new swimming, picnic and boating facilities will be a focal point for the local community and visitors over summer.

Snowy’s acting CEO Roger Whitby, the Member for Wagga Wagga Dr Joe McGirr and Snowy Valleys Council Mayor Ian Chaffey recently had the opportunity to view the upgraded recreation area as part of the Tumut 3 Power Station 50th birthday celebrations.

The facilities include a safe swimming beach with improved pedestrian access and car parking, a large picnic shelter, grassed areas, a widened two-lane boat ramp and new mooring pontoon.

Snowy Hydro contributed $560,000 to the recreation area project, with the NSW Government investing $850,000. Snowy Valleys Council managed construction of the project, which was completed in February this year.

Mr Whitby said Snowy Hydro always proudly supports the local communities it lives and operates in.

“We have been extremely pleased to contribute to this recreation improvement project in Talbingo, a town constructed as part of the mighty Snowy Scheme and just down the road from Tumut 3 Power Station.

“We think the community and the many visitors who come to the area for fishing, water skiing and swimming will really enjoy the upgraded amenities. 

“The new facilities allow boats to continue using Talbingo Reservoir while swimmers have a safe and friendly spot to keep cool.”




Snowy Hydro is celebrating the completion of excavation for its first tunnel for Snowy 2.0, with the Lady Eileen Hudson tunnel boring machine (TBM) reaching the location of the new underground power station cavern.

The 11-metre diameter TBM has excavated 2.85km to create the main access tunnel at Lobs Hole in the Snowy Mountains, where a workforce of more than 2,200 people are building Snowy 2.0 – the 2,000 megawatt pumped hydro expansion of the mighty Snowy Scheme.

Snowy Hydro acting CEO Roger Whitby said the tunnelling achievement was a significant milestone, with Snowy 2.0 set to underpin the nation’s transition to renewables.

“Snowy 2.0 will not only provide on-demand, quick-start generating capacity for the National Electricity Market (NEM), but a massive 350,000 gigawatt hours of energy storage,” Mr Whitby said.

“This is our first new major tunnel excavation in decades, since construction of the original Scheme, and it gives us access to the site where we will create the enormous cavern 800m underground that will house our power station.

“The TBM Lady Eileen Hudson and our teams from Snowy Hydro and contractor Future Generation Joint Venture have done a great job to complete this critical tunnelling task.

“However, there’s no slowing down. Work across the project continues to move ahead rapidly and this tunnel boring machine is now being dismantled so it can be moved to the Talbingo adit where it will be reassembled with some new components for excavation of the 6km tailrace tunnel.”

While dismantling of the TBM conveyor belt gets underway in the main access tunnel, drill and blast activities are ongoing to excavate cross passages and tunnels to gain access to the power station complex, which will include a 251m-long, 52m-high machine hall cavern and 223m-long, 46m-high transformer hall cavern.

The new work fronts associated with the powerhouse will create further employment opportunities on this clean energy mega-project.

The Snowy 2.0 project will link Tantangara Reservoir (top storage) with Talbingo Reservoir (bottom storage) through 27km of tunnels and a power station with pumping capabilities.

This will enable water to be released for energy generation at times of peak demand and then pumped back to the top storage when there is excess renewable energy in the system, ready to generate again.

Main access tunnel fast facts:

  • 10 metres in diameter
  • Lined with 1,422 concrete rings installed by the TBM
  • Rings comprise 12,798 individual segments manufactured locally in Cooma
  • Has four cross-passages linking it to the adjacent emergency, cable and ventilation tunnel
  • Also has four cross tunnels and a turning bay to facilitate construction access around the power station complex
  • Provides pedestrian and vehicle access into the power station



Snowy Hydro’s Snowy 2.0 precast factory in Cooma has achieved an impressive milestone, with manufacturing completed for all concrete segments that will line the dry access tunnels.

More than 25,000 of these seven-tonne segments have been produced at the Polo Flat factory, which employs 120 people from the 2,100-strong Snowy 2.0 workforce. The segments are being used to line the main access tunnel and emergency, cable and ventilation tunnel at Lobs Hole.

In total, 36,000 or 27% of the 130,000-plus segments needed to line all of the Snowy 2.0 tunnels have now come off the Polo Flat production line, said Paul Broad, Snowy Hydro’s Managing Director and CEO.

“We’re proud to be manufacturing and investing locally, and providing employment opportunities for local people as well,” Mr Broad said. “The precast factory is operated by our principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture and it is powering along.

“To efficiently and safely produce enough of these massive concrete segments to line the 5.6 kilometres of dry access tunnels is a terrific achievement.”

The factory supports the operation of the three Snowy 2.0 tunnel boring machines, which are excavating 27 kilometres of tunnels from Tantangara Reservoir to Talbingo Reservoir for the Snowy 2.0 pumped-hydro expansion of the Snowy Scheme.

The Polo Flat facility includes a concrete batching plant and segment manufacturing from two automated carousels, producing up to 24 rings, each one made of nine segments, per day.

Many of the raw materials like aggregates and sand are sourced from the local Schmidt Quarries at Mt Mary and Nimmitabel, which is reducing transport time and costs. Concrete is mixed within the batching plant, which is then transferred into the factory and poured into specially-designed moulds. 

With the use of innovative robotics, the moulds progress along the carousel as the segments cure and finish. There is an onsite laboratory and testing to check the quality of every segment produced.

Snowy 2.0 is leading the way in Australia to successfully deploy and use robots to automate the process of demoulding, cleaning and application of the release agent on the moulds, before pushing them through to the next production stage. This has allowed the factory to maintain a safe and low-noise working environment for workers. 

It takes approximately eight to 10 hours to cure and de-mould each segment from start to finish, then they are stored for about two weeks before being transported to site, loaded into TBMs and installed in the tunnels.


  • Number produced = 25,210
  • Distance if all these segments were placed side-by-side = 86.3 kilometres
  • Tonnes of concrete used = 151,260
  • Equivalent rings (nine segments per ring) = 2,802
  • These segments – designed to provide durability under extreme fire loads – have been laboratory tested for fire loads of 1,350 degrees Celsius for up to 120 minutes.

Snowy 2.0 project background: Snowy 2.0 is a nation-building project that will underpin thousands of megawatts of renewables and will continue to keep the lights on for generations to come.

Snowy 2.0 will link two existing Snowy Scheme reservoirs, Tantangara and Talbingo, and its new  power station with six pump-turbines will be located about 800m underground. Water in the top storage will be released for energy generation at times of peak demand and pumped back at times when there is excess renewable energy in the grid, so Snowy 2.0 is ready to meet demand when needed.




Snowy Hydro is committed to ensuring the next generation of locals are equipped with the skills and knowledge to help keep them safe on the roads, with the long-running Young Driver Program playing a crucial role.

For four years Snowy Hydro has partnered with Driving Solutions to provide local students with young driver training. This month more than 275 local young people participated in the program, which helps prepare Learner and Provisional drivers for the driving conditions they face on Snowy Mountains roads.

Since its inception in 2002, the Snowy Hydro Young Driver Program has provided more than 1,600 local students with the opportunity to improve their driving skills and become safer drivers.

Snowy Hydro CEO and Managing Director Paul Broad said the program demonstrated Snowy Hydro’s continued commitment to the safety and well-being of young people living in the Snowy Mountains region. 

“The Snowy Hydro Young Driver Program delivers learning exercises and activities that give our local kids the skills and knowledge to help keep them safe on our unique and at times, challenging, mountain roads,” Mr Broad said.

“These young and inexperienced drivers gain so much from the program – it’s really valuable and we at Snowy Hydro are proud to play a part in ensuring greater safety on the roads where we live and work.”

The program covered topics such as correct seating position and the importance of understanding the difference between vehicles with anti-lock brake systems (ABS) and vehicles without ABS. Students were taught when to fit snow chains on their vehicles while travelling in snow and ice conditions. They were also shown the correct way to use and fit snow chains on a vehicle. 
The activities and exercises provided useful and practical knowledge to assist the students when behind the wheel. Topics included driver attitudes and the effects of distractions when driving, such as mobile phones, passengers and vehicle navigation. Other practical skills were also discussed including how to understand correct and incorrect tyre pressure on their vehicles. 




Snowy Hydro is carrying out a large project to refurbish the Murray 1 Power Station generator step-up transformers, a process that will significantly extend the life of these important Snowy Scheme assets.

Reconditioning and replacement of the bushings will help to increase the lifespan of the transformers by an extra 15 years. Under normal conditions, transformers are expected to operate for 30 to 40 years, but thanks to the thorough effort Snowy puts into maintaining its assets, the Murray 1 Power Station transformers will operate for many years to come – an amazing achievement. 

There have been a number of obstacles to overcome during the course of this project, including road closures along the Alpine Way due to natural incidents, weather extremes in the Snowy Mountains, and above all, COVID-19 and the closing of the border between New South Wales and Victoria. 

Murray 1 is located near Khancoban and Wilson Transformer Company (WTC), based in Melbourne, which was hired to do some of the important work, navigated a six-week   government approval process to cross the border from Victoria to work on the refurbishment through the pandemic.

WTC manufactured a purpose-built dry out tank at its Glen Waverley factory specifically for this major Snowy Hydro project.

The tank is utilised after the team has de-tanked the core and coils – which are then both put inside the dry-out tank. The team completes welding works and modification of the old transformer tank and lid, before re-tanking the unit into the original body.

There are two more Murray 1 transformer refurbishments and bushing replacements remaining, with the last scheduled to be completed in November 2022.

So far, the project has been highly successful, with approximately 100 workers involved, and no safety concerns or injuries. Snowy Hydro appreciates all those contributing to this project for prioritising safety and health above everything else. 

In addition, Snowy Hydro and WTC have worked with many local businesses in the construction, including electrical contractors PHE and Roddy Engineering, both based in Tumut, NSW.




Snowy Hydro and members of the local community have today come together to celebrate the commissioning of the third and final tunnel boring machine (TBM) for Snowy 2.0, Australia’s largest renewable energy project.

The 143 metre-long TBM Florence is one of a trio of technologically-advanced machines excavating more than 27 kilometres of waterway tunnels as part of Snowy 2.0, the huge pumped-hydro expansion of the iconic Snowy Mountains Scheme that is ensuring Australia’s secure and reliable transition to renewables.

Snowy Hydro Managing Director and CEO Paul Broad joined Snowy Mountains community members and representatives from Snowy 2.0 principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture for a celebration event and ribbon-cutting at Tantangara, where TBM Florence is being launched to excavate the headrace tunnel.

Mr Broad said it was a wonderful experience sharing a significant project milestone with the community, former Snowy Scheme workers and local school children and businesses.

“We want to thank the local community for their support. It’s great knowing that this massive project is delivering thousands of jobs, many training and apprenticeship opportunities for workers, and a major economic boost for the Snowy Mountains region and beyond,” Mr Broad said.

“The progress we’re making on Snowy 2.0 is terrific. The other two TBMs, Lady Eileen Hudson and Kirsten, are already powering ahead excavating the main access tunnel and emergency, cable and ventilation tunnel at Lobs Hole, so we’re delighted to be starting this very long and deep headrace tunnel from Tantangara.

“Watching TBM Florence’s big blue cutterhead spin today alongside people who helped build the original Scheme highlights the pride we at Snowy Hydro have in our pioneering past and how exciting the renewable energy future is with Snowy 2.0.”

There are almost 1,800 people currently working on Snowy 2.0, including hundreds of locals, with the project generating about 4,000 direct jobs and many more in the supply chain.

Snowy 2.0 will deliver 2,000 megawatts of pumping and generating capacity and 175 hours of storage – enough to power 500,000 homes simultaneously – which will underpin thousands of megawatts of intermittent renewables. 

Named after Australia’s first female electrical engineer, Florence Violet McKenzie (1890-1982), TBM Florence is set to excavate 14.9 kilometres of the 17km headrace tunnel. The 11-metre diameter Herrenknecht-designed machine has been purposely designed to manage hazardous dust and poor ground conditions while tunnelling up to 450 metres underground.

TBM Florence was named by local Berridale student Riley Douch as part of the Snowy 2.0 Tunnel Boring Machine Naming Competition, which highlighted ground-breaking Australian women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
For more information about Snowy 2.0 visit


JINDABYNE LAKE LEVELS – Updated 21 March 2022


High inflows to the Snowy Scheme, including Jindabyne catchment, have continued through March.

As the lake level at Jindabyne approached 100% on 7 March, additional releases were made to the Snowy River below Jindabyne Dam to manage the high inflows. These release have now tapered off, and will again follow the environmental release targets notified here:

The outlook as we head towards winter is for wet conditions to continue. Snowy Hydro will continue to pump water from Jindabyne to Geehi to be released through Murray 1 and 2 Power stations into the upper Murray River at every opportunity. Further releases to the Snowy River may still be required to avoid uncontrolled releases.

If Lake Jindabyne reaches 100%, it will trigger operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.
For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit and
Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.
DPE Water will engage with landowners subscribed to its SMS service.




December 2021 was officially the wettest since records began for the Lake Jindabyne catchment and with over 160mm of rain so far, January isn’t too far behind. The lake level will continue to stay high throughout summer. 

Releases from Jindabyne Dam to the Snowy River returned to the advised environmental releases from 18 January. Additional flows above the notified environmental releases into the Snowy River are possible while wet conditions persist. Snowy Hydro will continue to look for opportunities to pump water to Geehi Reservoir, however, at times, the surplus of water pumped to Geehi will be returned to Jindabyne.

It remains possible that the storage may again reach 100% (or full supply level), triggering operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE Water) has been consulted on this plan and continues to work closely with Snowy Hydro to make controlled releases to manage the spill risks and minimise downstream impacts.

For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit and

Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.