NSW to lead the nation on emissions reduction

14 March

The NSW economy will see over $11.6 billion of private investment and 2,400 new jobs under Stage 1 of the NSW Government’s plan to reach net zero emissions by 2050.

Energy and Environment Minister Matt Kean said the plan, the first of its kind in Australia, is all about reducing the State’s emissions in ways that grow the economy.

“Where there are technologies that can reduce both our emissions and costs for households and businesses, we want to roll them out across the State. Where these technologies are not yet commercial, we want to invest in their development so they will be available in the decades to come,” Mr Kean said.

“Almost two-thirds of the private investment under the plan will go to regional and rural NSW, creating job opportunities and diversifying local economies that are doing it tough after the drought and devastating bushfire season.

“Global markets are rapidly changing in response to climate change, with many of the world’s biggest economies and companies committed to reach net zero emissions by 2050. NSW already leads the nation with its economic and investment plans and from today, NSW will lead the nation with its Net Zero Plan.

“Our actions are firmly grounded in science and economics, not ideology, to give our workers and businesses the best opportunity to thrive in a low-carbon world.”

Under the plan, household electricity prices will fall, regional businesses will have access to new technologies and markets, industry will be supported to modernise their plant and increase productivity and consumers will have more information to help them make financially and environmentally sustainable choices.

The plan is financially supported by the landmark $2 billion bilateral agreement between the Commonwealth and NSW Government announced in January 2020.

More information about the Net Zero Plan Stage 1: 2020-2030

Source: NSW Government

 

PROJECT NEWS

White Rock Wind Farm 2

Modifications to the referral to construct and operate Stage 2 of the White Rock Wind Farm, located 20km west of Glen Innes in northern NSW, were approved by the federal Department of the Environment & Energy with conditions relating to the clearance restrictions of Box-Gum Grassy Woodland, and potential Regent Honeyeater, Koala Spot-tailed Quoll habitat. The 202 MW project is being developed by Goldwind Australia and CECEP Wind Power.

 

Granville Harbour Wind Farm: First turbines energised and commissioned

16 March

The wind farm, which is expected to become fully operational in the second quarter of 2020, currently has nine turbines installed and will eventually have 31 turbines working to produce 122 megawatts of electricity – enough to power 46,000 homes. The wind farm is a key part of Tasmania’s plan to become 100% reliant on renewable energy by 2022.

Project Director, Lyndon Frearson said: "These first nine turbines are visually astonishing and a clear indication of Tasmania’s determination to move to a future where all electricity needs can be reliably met using clean, renewable power. We went from first energisation to full output within two days. That's a pretty strong statement about the quality of the work that's been completed by the team on site to be able to get that output and we've been consistently getting the full output of the plant since we've been operating.”

John Laing Project Asset Manager Tatenda Gwekwe said; “It’s great to see the project team hitting these milestones in such a challenging environment. As well as the environmental benefits this wind farm will obviously bring, it has provided nearly 200 jobs during the construction phase and will continue to provide 6 permanent jobs once completed. Creating value for all means bringing community benefits as well as delivering sustainable growth and it’s great to see Granville Harbour Wind Farm doing just that.”

Source: John Laing

 

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Email: lennoxcomms@gmail.com

 

PROJECT NEWS

Theodore Solar Farm

Juwi Renewable Energy’s proposed 70 MW Theodore Solar Farm in Queensland declared not a controlled action by the federal Department of the Environment & Energy. The proposal is based on a project covering an area of up to 220 hectares utilising PV solar panels mounted on single axis trackers with ~14 inverter stations required, although details to be  finalised in the design phase. The solar farm will connect to the existing Theodore - Moura 66kV transmission line which borders the site. An area for solar battery storage is designated next to the project’s substation and switchyard.

 

Element 25 Secures $2 Million Facility

17 March

Element 25 Limited (ASX:E25) (E25 or Company) is pleased to announce that it has entered into a Controlled Placement Agreement (CPA) with Acuity Capital to provide E25 with up to $2 million of standby equity capital over the coming 23 month period. This standby facility may be used to fund the development of the world class Butcherbird High Project and working capital.

Controlled Placement Agreement

Under the CPA, E25 retains full control of all aspects of the placement process:

having sole discretion as to whether or not to utilise the CPA, the quantum of issued shares, the minimum issue price of shares and the timing of each placement tranche (if any). There are no requirements on E25 to utilise the CPA and E25 may terminate the CPA at any time, without cost or penalty.

Acuity Capital and the CPA do not place any restrictions on E25 raising capital through other methods. If E25 does decide to utilise the CPA, E25 is able to set a floor price (at its sole discretion) and the final issue price will be calculated as the greater of that floor price set by E25 and a 10% discount to a Volume Weighted Average Price (VWAP) over a period of E25's choosing (again at the sole discretion of E25).

As collateral for the CPA, E25 has agreed to place 4.8M ordinary shares (“New Shares”) from its LR7.1 capacity, at nil consideration to Acuity Capital (Collateral Shares) but may, at any time, cancel the CPA and buy back the Collateral Shares for no consideration (subject to shareholder approval).

About the Butcherbird High Purity Manganese Project

The Butcherbird High Purity Manganese Deposit is a world class manganese resource with current JORC resources in excess of 263 Mt of manganese ore. The Company has completed a robust scoping study with respect to developing the deposit to produce High Purity Manganese Sulphate for lithium ion battery cathodes as well as Electrolytic Manganese Metal for use in certain specialty steels. A PFS is currently being completed and is expected to further confirm the commercial potential of the Project.

The Project straddles the Great Northern Highway and the Goldfields Gas Pipeline providing turnkey logistics and energy solutions. The Company is also intending to integrate renewable energy into the power solution to minimise the carbon intensity of the Project as well as reducing energy costs. A cleaner, lower carbon flowsheet and high penetration renewable energy will place Butcherbird at the forefront of sustainable metal production.

Source: Element 25

 

ib vogt first development project sale of their Australian portfolio

17 March

ib vogt GmbH (ib vogt) is pleased to announce the sale of the Sebastopol Solar Farm to Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV). ib vogt, a successful global Solar PV developer and EPC contractor first entered the Australian solar market in 2016 when it constructed the 11.1 MWp  Williamsdale project in the ACT.  Since then the company has identified and progressed to the advanced stages of development over 450 MWp of Solar PV projects throughout NSW and VIC.  The most advanced of project of this portfolio is the Sebastopol Solar Farm.

The proposed Sebastopol Solar Farm is located near Temora in the Riverina region of NSW and once operational, will supply up to 90MW (AC) of renewable energy to the grid. ib vogt Initially identified the project in 2017 and has fully developed the project to the final stages of development with the project having full planning consent, all land rights secured and grid ‘Committed’ status with AEMO for the project to commence into generator registration.

Throughout the development process ib vogt has strived to build strong and collaborative relationships with both Temora Shire Council and Junee Shire Council and the local community to ensure that the Sebastopol Solar Farm was suitably developed to address any concerns or adverse impacts.  This resulted in the project receiving no formal objections to the Development Application and a very supportive community towards the project.

The project will connect into a 132kV line adjacent to the site, which is owned and operated by Essential Energy. Ib vogt also enjoyed a great working relationship with Essential Energy throughout the grid connection process.

Carsten Stang, Chief Commercial Officer of ib vogt stated:” The proposed Sebastopol Solar Farm is a world class solar PV project and highlights our expertise in successfully developing solar projects in a challenging solar market. This is our first development project in our attractive Australian portfolio and we look forward to progressing our next projects to a similar stage shortly’

‘We are grateful to the local Council and broader community in Temora for the warm welcome and support they have shown our team throughout the development process over the past 3 years and wish FRV all the best in the next stages of development for the Sebastopol Solar Farm’

Source: ib vogt

 

PROJECT NEWS

Broadsound Solar Farm

Hadstone Australia’s proposed 392 MW Broadsound Solar Farm in Clarke Creek Queensland was declared not a controlled action so approval is not required under the federal government’s EPBC Act.

 

FRV signs new power purchase agreement with Snowy Hydro in New South Wales, Australia

18 March

▪ FRV has reached an agreement with Snowy Hydro, one of the main electricity generation and retailing companies in Australia

Sebastopol Solar Farm will produce enough clean energy to supply more than 40,000 homes and avoid the emission of approximately 77,600 tons of CO2 per year, the equivalent of taking about 27,700 cars off the road each year

▪ This project will be FRV’s seventh solar farm in Australia

Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV), a leading global developer of renewable utility-scale projects, has announced the signing of a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Snowy Hydro, one of Australia’s main electricity generation and retailing companies. The agreement will permit FRV to deliver solar power generated from the 90MWac Sebastopol Solar Farm in New South Wales, Australia.

Located 16km south of Temora and approximately 440km south west of Sydney in New South Wales, the plant will connect to the national grid. Its generation will be enough to supply energy to over 40,000 Australian households and avoid the emission of approximately 77,600 tons of CO2 annually, the equivalent of taking about 27,700 cars off the road each year.

Sebastopol Solar Farm’s construction and operation will contribute to the economic development of the area, with FRV projecting the creation of up to 150 jobs during the construction phase of the plant, and 2-3 operational staff for the entire life of the project. Maintenance contracts for jobs such as panel cleaning, fence repair, and road grading, etc. will also be required and will likely be met by local contractors or subcontractors. In addition, the project is expected to have a direct benefit on business volumes for local services, materials and contracting such as accommodation, food and other retail businesses in the area.

This is the second PPA signed by FRV with Snowy Hydro following the successful bid for the 68.7 MWac Goonumbla Solar Farm as part of the Snowy Hydro Renewable Energy Procurement Program in 2018, and which is currently in the final stages of construction.

This agreement is a demonstration of FRV’s commitment to renewables in Australia and of its goal to provide comprehensive and accessible renewable energy solutions across the globe.

Carlo Frigerio, FRV Managing Director Australia said, “After the successful experience of Goonumbla, we are pleased to continue working with Snowy Hydro on a second project contributing to the ongoing diversification of the electricity generation resources in NSW and Australia. This project will be our seventh Australian solar farm and will consolidate our leading position in the Australian renewable energy market”.

Fady Jameel, Deputy President & Vice Chairman of Abdul Latif Jameel, FRV’s parent company, highlights “This announcement marks a new milestone for FRV in Australia. The devastating Australian bushfires have started 2020 off with a stark reminder of the reality of global warming, and the urgent need to address climate change. Together with our partners, FRV and Snowy Hydro, Abdul Latif Jameel is committed to playing an active role in developing clean energy solutions and ultimately contributing to create a more sustainable future for the world”.

Snowy Hydro’s CEO, Paul Broad, said the company was constantly on the lookout for renewable energy offtake opportunities across the eastern-states.

“Through our peaking generation assets we have the capacity to support and ‘firm’ significant amounts of intermittent wind and solar. Following the timely development of Goonumbla, which Snowy Hydro supported through an offtake agreement signed in 2018, we are confident of the same success with Sebastopol.

Snowy Hydro has significant capacity to firm up and store intermittent renewable energy generation. Our flexible portfolio of fast-start assets allows us to supply our customers with 24/7 renewable energy, lowering prices and increasing energy security.” Mr Broad said.

Source: FRV Australia

 

Victoria’s go-it-alone approach retrograde move for end users

18 March

Victoria’s decision to step outside the National Electricity Market rules and go-it-alone on transmission developments is a retrograde step, the costs of which will be borne by the State’s energy users, according to the Australian Energy Council.

The Australian Energy Council’s Chief Executive Sarah McNamara said that the passing of the National Electricity (Victoria) Amendment Act (the Act) overnight allows the Victorian Energy Minister, without any transparency or cost-benefit assessment, to commit to major transmission upgrades.

“The National Electricity Rules currently require a robust assessment of potential investments in new transmission infrastructure. This assessment is run independently and at arms length from political considerations. Its focus is on the best interests of customers, who ultimately pick up the tab for grid investments.

“Investments in Victoria will no longer be subject to that test, which means customers may pay more. This is because every transmission and network investment will unavoidably affect market investments, so careful and individual assessments carried out at arms length from politics are critical.

“The Act has been rushed through the Victorian Parliament with no consultation and minimal scrutiny. It makes no effort to replace the regulator’s rigorous investment test with a Victorian equivalent. This can only be a bad outcome for Victorian households and businesses who may be locked into paying for multi-billion dollar investments with no confidence that it is the right call.

“The Act also creates uncertainty for private investors in generation, who can no longer rely on a transparent and independent decision making process for transmission investment.

“A coordinated national planning process has to date been a key cornerstone of delivering a truly national grid.

“State-based interventions increase instability in an already challenging market environment with knock-on effects for consumers in other states which are members of the National Electricity Market.”

Source: Australian Energy Council

 

COAG Energy Council must reduce investment risk and deliver new transmission

18 March

Following confirmation that Friday’s COAG Energy Council meeting will proceed via teleconference, the Clean Energy Council has today released its briefing paper on the key issues facing Australia’s energy ministers.

The Clean Energy Council urges the COAG Energy Council to prioritise reforms that will remove the growing risks placed on clean energy investors and take further steps to accelerate investment in much needed electricity transmission and the development of Renewable Energy Zones (REZs).

The Clean Energy Council has welcomed a revised approach to the Australian Energy Market Commission’s (AEMC) proposed Coordination of Generation and Transmission Investment (COGATI) reforms. The clean energy industry had serious concerns about the previous proposal and the process expediting its development and implementation. We thank the AEMC for listening to the clean energy industry’s concerns and we support the revised proposal for reform to the current access regime to be undertaken as part of the Energy Security Board’s (ESB) post-2025 market review process.

Investment in large-scale renewable energy collapsed by 50 per cent in 2019, so addressing the growing risks and accelerating transmission investment will be critical to ensuring investment in new renewable energy and energy storage projects picks up again. The Clean Energy Council has written to energy ministers asking them to prioritise the following actions at this week’s COAG Energy Council meeting:

Accelerate transmission investment

The underinvestment in transmission is one of the most critical challenges facing Australia’s energy system. It is stifling new generation, constraining existing generation and resulting in increased energy security risks and higher power prices. The COAG Energy Council should endorse the ESB’s proposed rule change to action the Integrated System Plan and fast track changes to the Regulatory Investment Test for Transmission to ensure it remains fit-for-purpose for the changing energy market.

Review access regime as part of the ESB’s post-2025 market review

The COAG Energy Council should support the revised proposal for reform to the current access regime to be undertaken as part of the ESB’s market review process.

Support the development of Renewable Energy Zones

The COAG Energy Council should support the development of REZs by agreeing flexible design elements and committing to delivering priority REZs across all states.

Review marginal loss factor (MLF) regime

The COAG Energy Council should commission a comprehensive review of the current MLF regime, including an assessment of options that can address loss factor volatility while avoiding any negative impact on customers.

Accelerate reform of stand-alone power systems for bushfire recovery

The COAG Energy Council should approve the framework to allow distribution network service providers to utilise stand-alone power systems for bushfire recovery as a matter of urgency.

Review of governance of distributed energy resources (DER) standards

Grid connection rules and DER standards suffer from a lack of good governance and coordination. The current system is a bureaucratic maze that places an unnecessary burden of cost and complexity onto Australia’s solar industry. The COAG Energy Council should approve the governance review of these standards proceeding to the next steps.

Visit the Clean Energy Council website for the full briefing paper outlining all the key issues facing energy minister’s ahead of Friday’s COAG Energy Council meeting.

Source: Clean Energy Council

 

Milestone carbon reduction plan adopted

18 March

The City of Subiaco is the first local government in the state to develop a comprehensive corporate carbon reduction plan, with the goal of becoming certified carbon neutral by June 2020 and switching to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2025.

The plan was endorsed by Council last night and is expected to reduce the City’s greenhouse gas emissions by 772 tonnes a year by 2030.

The City has already begun its transition to low carbon operations through the installation of solar panels and energy efficient systems, electric and hybrid fleet vehicles, and increased efficiencies in water use and waste.

In addition to becoming certified carbon neutral and switching to renewable energy, the plan outlines other targets including that fleet vehicles meet the Climate Change Authority’s standard by 2025, 20 per cent reduction in energy consumption by 2025, and an overall reduction in operational greenhouse gas emissions of 45 per cent by 2030.

“The adoption of this plan is a significant step for the City and clearly demonstrates our commitment to sustainability and delivering action on climate change, which is important to our community,” Mayor Penny Taylor said.

“We want to be a leading Council that seeks to actively minimise all carbon emissions – as we have been doing – and look to appropriate offsets that make a real difference and show leadership at a community level.”

The plan is expected to deliver financial savings through more efficient use of energy across City operations.

“As well as giving ratepayers better value for money, this plan will help ensure the City is protected against price increases on utilities and fuel, and prepared for a potential carbon price in the future,” Mayor Taylor said.

Source: City of Subiaco

 

PROJECT NEWS

Woolooga Solar Farm

The federal Department of the Environment & Energy has ruled that Lightsource BP’s proposed 130 MW Woolooga Solar Farm near Lower Wonga in Queensland is a controlled action and so will require assessment and approval under the EPBC Act before it can proceed. The relevant controlling provisions are Listed threatened species and communities (sections 18 and 18A).

 

Solar plus stimulus delivers renewable energy at 2 cents per kwh!

18 March

The recent announcement by the federal government to as part of the national stimulus package creates a further windfall for businesses looking to purchase solar.

For a 100kW system, the renewable energy target already provides a ‘green benefit’ of some $55,000 towards your move to cheaper, renewable energy. With an immediate tax deduction introduced through the stimulus package, it is possible to reduce your year 1 cash flow by a further $35,000* for systems purchased by eligible businesses before 30 June 2020.

With a total savings of up to 70% through a mix of tax benefits and green benefits, businesses can be consuming energy from solar for as little as 2 cents per kWh over the systems 20+ year life.

Solgen Energy offers businesses a clear pathway to achieving these outcomes. Contact us to discuss options for your business for a straightforward turn-key solution.

The full Australian Government response can be found here.

*Estimate only based on company with taxable income at 27.5% allowing deduction for estimated cost of 100kW system.

Source: Solgen

 

Climate Change Authority releases new report - Prospering in a low-emissions world

18 March

The Climate Change Authority today released its report Prospering in a Low Emissions World: an updated climate policy toolkit for Australia. This report sets out how Australia can further develop its policies to ensure we make our contribution to the global task of reducing emissions, in both the short-term and long-term, and position Australia to take advantage of the opportunities of a global low-emissions economy.

Dr Wendy Craik, the Chair of the Climate Change Authority said, "Australians are already experiencing the effects of a variable and changing climate. 2019 was Australia’s warmest and driest year on record – a key factor driving this summer’s catastrophic bushfire season, which caused widespread loss and devastation to Australian communities, wildlife and natural ecosystems. At the same time Australians have endured a record severe and prolonged drought.

The case for countries to move quickly to reduce climate change and adopt measures to build our resilience has never been stronger. The good news is the global shift to low emissions presents many opportunities for Australia."

The report suggests how Australia can prosper in a low-emissions world due to our abundance of clean energy and already strong institutions and capabilities. As global demand for energy increases and countries move to lower emissions, there will be a growing demand for Australia’s clean energy resources and low emissions products. The report also points to the potential for emerging technologies and industries, such as hydrogen, to generate significant opportunities for Australia; and acknowledges the Government’s forthcoming Technology Roadmap to stimulate research and investment.

New areas of jobs and growth could open up in diverse economic sectors such as sustainable agriculture, new green-tech industries, environmental and financial services and climate resilient infrastructure.

In the report, the Authority updates its previous policy toolkit on economy-wide opportunities to reduce emissions for Australia to meet its Paris Agreement commitments. The report presents 35 recommendations to help transition Australia to a low emissions future, building on the Government’s current climate change policy settings to drive down emissions in the transport, industrial, electricity, agriculture and land, and waste sectors.

As well, the updated toolkit aims to empower businesses, governments, communities and families to take action to reduce their emissions and help them better prepare for the changes in our climate that are already locked in.

As an open economy Australia needs continued access to global markets which will be transitioning to low emissions goods and services The Authority emphasises that Australia’s future prosperity will be best served by participating in strong global action to reduce emissions and planning for and managing the impacts of the global transition. The updated toolkit seeks to provide a clear, long-term signal to businesses, investors and communities on the global transition to a net zero emissions world and to ensure the transition is well managed so new jobs and benefits flow to regions and communities.

"We need to position our economy for the coming changes in global trade and investment markets and seize on the opportunities before us, or risk being left behind," Dr Craik said.

Established in 2012, the Climate Change Authority provides independent expert advice to the Australian Government and Parliament on climate change policy. The Authority does this by conducting statutory and specifically commissioned reviews and by undertaking independent research and analysis.

The report can be found at www.climatechangeauthority.gov.au

Source: Climate Change Authority

 

NEW PROJECT

Plans for world-first solar power plant in western Victoria

19 March

On behalf of the Australian Government, the Australian Renewable Agency (ARENA) has today announced $3 million in funding to RayGen Resources Pty Ltd (RayGen) to conduct a technical and commercial feasibility study for a 4 MW “solar hydro” power plant to be built in north-western Victoria.

In a world-first, the Melbourne based renewable energy startup RayGen is proposing to build a fully dispatchable renewable energy facility that will use their innovative concentrated solar PV technology known as PV Ultra and combine it with their Thermal Hydro technology to generate renewable energy and provide large scale energy storage. The grid-scale power plant is proposed to be built in Carwarp near Mildura capable of providing 4 MW of solar generation and 17 hours of storage.

The $6 million first phase will get the project to financial close and shovel ready for construction.

RayGen will be working with AGL and GHD on this initial phase which will include technical and commercial feasibility studies, commercial assessment, a connection agreement, offtake agreements, capital raising and a planning permit for a preferred site.

RayGen has developed this innovative application of their existing PV Ultra technology and the new thermal storage technology. PV Ultra is a tower-mounted, concentrated solar PV technology that combines low-cost solar collection heliostats and high-efficiency solar conversion via PV cells, creating the ability to co-generate electricity and heat. The heat by-product is captured and used to boost the efficiency of the thermal storage element.

The thermal storage technology stores energy as a temperature difference between two water reservoirs. The heat generated from the PV Ultra is used to charge the hot reservoir, whilst the cold reservoir is cooled using an electric chiller supplied with electricity from PV Ultra and the grid.

The stored temperature difference will power an Organic Rankine Cycle engine to generate electricity with a round trip efficiency of 70 per cent.

The size of the storage reservoirs are readily scalable and the water will be recycled and reused.

ARENA CEO Darren Miller said: “With RayGen’s project we’re seeing homegrown innovation in solar PV now being used to find new solutions for dispatchable renewable energy. RayGen’s solution could complement other more traditional forms of storage such as grid-scale batteries and pumped hydro.”

“With ARENA’s funding, RayGen is aiming to progress this project to be shovel ready by the end of this year and to prove its novel technology can be cost-competitive with batteries and pumped hydro.

“While this solar and thermal storage plant works similarly to a solar farm combined with a pumped hydro facility, the advantage of RayGen’s approach is that it can be deployed at a smaller scale and at a much lower absolute cost,” he said.

RayGen CEO Richard Payne said: “Australia’s energy transition will require storage solutions that can store power cost-effectively for hours, days or weeks and be deployed at large scale around the world.

“RayGen has developed an innovative solar-plus-storage product that captures sunlight with mirrors and stores energy in water. Our technology provides firm renewable power at low cost, while conserving natural resources and our environment.

“RayGen’s flagship 4 MW / 50 MWh plant is expected to offer storage at a fraction of the cost of recent battery projects. The project is in a renewable energy zone that has limited capacity to support pumped hydro. We will also be supplying synchronous power to the grid where it is critically needed in the West Murray region.

“We would like to thank ARENA and our project partners in AGL and GHD for their support on this exciting project.”

“AGL’s support for this project is consistent with our commitment to providing sustainable, secure and affordable energy for our customers and helping shape a sustainable energy future for Australia,” said AGL Interim Executive General Manager Wholesale Markets Dominique Van Den Berg.

ARENA previously supported RayGen with a total of $8.67 million in funding to develop its PV Ultra technology and build the 1 MW PV Ultra pilot project in Newbridge, Victoria. The pilot project has been operational for over two years powering a local mushroom farm.

RayGen is expected to reach financial close and commence construction on the plant this year, with the aim to have the facility commissioned in 2021.

Source: ARENA

 

RayGen’s dispatchable Solar Power Plant receives funding from ARENA, progresses towards financial close

20 March

RayGen Resources Pty Ltd (RayGen) has recently formalised an agreement for $3 million in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) to conduct a technical and commercial feasibility study for a flagship solar-plus-storage project to be built at Carwarp in north-west Victoria.

RayGen is proposing to build a fully dispatchable renewable energy facility that will deliver 4MW of solar generation and 3MW/50MWh (17 hours) of storage. This project will provide the National Electricity Market with day-night renewable electricity and support grid reliability. The project will also supply synchronous power where it is critically needed in the West Murray region.

RayGen has partnered with AGL and GHD to conduct commercial and technical assessments of the project and consider the future applications and cost of this technology.

The funding from ARENA will support RayGen to take the project to financial close and make it shovel ready for construction. RayGen is expecting to reach financial close and commence construction of the project this year, with the aim to have the facility commissioned in 2021.

The project will be the world-first deployment of a low-cost electricity storage technology in Victoria that:

  • Delivers low-cost, long duration energy storage, already less than half the cost of batteries for 10 hours of storage;
  • Produces near zero e-waste with a solution mostly mirrors and water;
  • Generates power with a synchronous heat engine (Organic Rankine Cycle);
  • Stores electricity with approx. 70% round-trip efficiency;
  • Provides full depth of discharge and zero degradation of storage medium (water) with cycling; and
  • Enables dual use with agricultural grazing beneath the solar field.

RayGen’s technology presents a unique opportunity to accelerate the global clean energy transition with a product that captures sunlight with mirrors and stores energy in water. RayGen’s proprietary technology supports the Australian advanced manufacturing sector, with locally produced control software and high-performance solar modules.

RayGen CEO Richard Payne said: “Australia’s energy transition will require storage solutions that can store power cost-effectively for hours, days or weeks and be deployed at large scale around the world.

“RayGen has developed an innovative solar-plus-storage product that captures sunlight with mirrors and stores energy in water. Our technology provides firm renewable power at low cost, while conserving natural resources and our environment.

“We would like to thank ARENA and our project partners in AGL and GHD for their support on this exciting project.”

Source: RayGen

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