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Eight batteries to be built around Australia to increase renewable energy storage capacity

Eight batteries to be built around Australia to increase renewable energy storage capacity

  • Categories:News
  • Time of issue:2022-12-19 10:44
  • Views:

(Summary description)Energy minister Chris Bowen says the batteries – shared between four states – will increase capacity tenfold to help stabilise the grid

Eight batteries to be built around Australia to increase renewable energy storage capacity

(Summary description)Energy minister Chris Bowen says the batteries – shared between four states – will increase capacity tenfold to help stabilise the grid

  • Categories:News
  • Time of issue:2022-12-19 10:44
  • Views:
Information

Energy minister Chris Bowen has announced eight new batteries to increase Australia’s renewable energy storage capacity. Photograph: Dan Himbrechts/AAP

Eight large batteries to store renewable energy will be built around Australia to support the grid and help keep energy prices down, the federal government has said.

The government-owned Australian Renewable Energy Agency (Arena) would provide $176m to the projects, the energy minister, Chris Bowen, announced on Saturday.

Bowen said it would revitalise the energy market, leading to an estimated tenfold increase in storage capacity.

“Some people say the sun doesn’t always shine and the wind doesn’t always blow, and that’s true, but we can store renewable energy for when we need it,” Bowen told reporters outside the Transgrid battery in western Sydney.

“Renewable energy is the cheapest form of energy. The more renewable energy we have in the system, the cheaper bills will be.”

The batteries will come online by 2025 and together would be big enough to power Tasmania for about three hours.

Three will be in Victoria – at Gnarwarre, Moorabool and Mortlake – and one at Liddell in New South Wales.

Queensland will be home to two, at Mount Fox and Western Downs, while South Australia will also have two, at Bungama and Blyth.

They will range from 200-300 megawatts each and have grid-forming inverter technology, which provides stability to the grid usually offered through coal and gas.

The government estimates the total value of the projects at $2.7bn.

Bowen said the projects would be some of the biggest batteries rolled out in Australia in the near future.

The chief executive of Arena, Darren Miller, said the batteries could underpin the transition to renewable energy.

“This pipeline of grid-forming projects will help move us closer to an electricity grid that can support 100% renewable energy in the [national energy market],” he said.

The acting shadow energy minister, Jonathon Duniam, welcomed the move but said batteries would not be able to replace all coal generation leaving the national energy market.

“Battery technology today is not yet at the scale or cost needed to reliably and cheaply replace coal and gas generation, which currently provide 70% of Australia’s power,” Duniam said in a statement.

The federal government has also unveiled further details about 58 community batteries to be rolled out in regional and urban areas, worth up to $500,000 each.

Electricity providers will use them to store energy generated by solar panels on residential homes, which could then be used by other nearby households.

An extra 342 will be set up after consultation.

Source: Australian Associated Press

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