Aurora Energy seeks non-network alternatives to meet future growth

28 August

Aurora Energy is planning for the future by exploring new ways to get electricity to the fastest growing regions across its network.

Aurora Energy General Manager Asset Management and Planning Glenn Coates said Aurora Energy is investigating non-network alternatives to supply power to the Wanaka and Upper Clutha areas, with registrations of interest opening today.

“Central Otago and Queenstown Lakes are two of the fastest growing regions in New Zealand and we need to ensure we are planning for this growth now,” Mr Coates said.

“This is why today, we have announced we are calling for registrations of interest to seek non-network alternatives to increase the supply to the Wanaka and Upper Clutha communities.

“This process is about finding reliable, lower cost alternatives to building new network infrastructure and ensuring the increase to supply can meet not only current demand but future demand as these regions continue to grow.

“The way communities are using technology is constantly changing with an increase in electric vehicles and more and more people generating their own electricity, and we need to ensure our network and operating systems adapt to enable the uptake of future technologies in the background of strong organic growth.

“We are open to any option that may come forward during the open market process and hope that new and emerging technologies play a part in the registrations of interest. 

“By going to open market for a non-network alternative we are hoping we will receive not only the most cost-effective solution but an approach that enables us to progress our operational capability toward real time management of distributed energy resources.” 

Mr Coates said the Upper Clutha Non-Network Alternative ROI was the first of its kind for Aurora Energy.

“Currently around New Zealand you don’t see many electricity distribution companies going out to open market for non-network alternatives and Aurora Energy is pleased to be leading the way in this space,” Mr Coates said.

Registrations of interest will open today, with the preferred option to be selected by October and the non-network support operational by April 2021.

The Register of Interest can be found here

Source: Aurora Energy


Nexif Energy to provide 154MW of reliable gas generation to the South Australian power grid

28 August

Nexif Energy, backed by Denham Capital, and the State Government of South Australia have today signed an agreement to deliver 154MW of reliable gas generation, making the State’s electricity market more competitive and secure.

Nexif Energy will lease and relocate five gas turbine generating units owned by the State Government from their current site at the former Holden factory to a new permanent power station site at Outer Harbor. These units will be commercially operated by Nexif Energy as a fast start and flexible peaking power station through the term of a 25-year lease.

The new power station will be developed on a fast track basis and will involve conversion of the units from diesel to natural gas as the primary fuel. Site preparations and relocation, erection and commissioning of the five units will require a workforce of up to 70 people. Operation of the units at the new power station site is scheduled to commence from December 2020.Nexif Energy is also working on plans to convert the units to combined cycle through the addition of a steam turbine so that the new power station could also operate as an efficient and flexible mid-merit power plant as early as 2022.

Nexif Energy Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer, Matthew Bartley said: “Today’s announcement builds on our already strong presence in South Australia. As the owner of the Lincoln Gap 212MW Wind Farm and 10MW Battery Energy Storage project near Port Augusta, this agreement complements our plans to double Lincoln Gap’s wind capacity from the existing 212MW up to about 457MW. Through this investment in dispatchable generation, we’re aiming to offer firm baseload style contracts from renewable energy generated predominately from existing and future stages of our Lincoln Gap project.”

Nexif Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer, Surender Singh said: “This will bring our operating portfolio in South Australia to 376MW and represents a step forward towards our vision of delivering clean, reliable power to South Australia.”

Denham Capital Managing Director, Saurabh Anand added: “Denham Capital is committed to delivering low-cost, clean power at the place and time of need. This agreement represents a significant milestone in our plans to invest in a portfolio of more than 1000MW of renewable and dispatchable generation projects in Australia and Asia by 2021.”

The initial 212MW stages of the company’s Lincoln Gap wind farm that is in operation and under construction totals 59 wind turbines and comprises a 10MW battery storage system capable of producing enough electricity to power approximately 155,000 households in South Australia once fully complete. The construction workforce has ranged from 110 to 140 people.

Source: Nexif Energy



Chichester Solar Farm

Alinta Energy granted an Electricity Integrated Regional Licence by the WA Economic Regulation Authority to construct and operate a 60 MW solar farm at Christmas Creek, approximately 100km north of Newman in northern WA. The licence authorises Alinta to sell electricity generated from the solar farm to large-use customers in the Pilbara region. The solar farm will connect to the 220kV Roy Hill – Cloudbreak power transmission line, to be constructed by Alinta Energy Transmission (Chichester) Pty Ltd.


Project EnergyConnect deemed critical infrastructure in NSW

29 August

TransGrid welcomes the New South Wales Government declaration of Project EnergyConnect (PEC) as Critical State Significant Infrastructure (CSSI).

The proposed interconnector will run approximately 900km from Robertson in South Australia to Wagga Wagga in NSW. PEC will provide energy security to South Australia (SA) and unlock new renewables generation in south-west NSW.

TransGrid’s Chief Executive Paul Italiano says the CSSI classification means the planning approval process in NSW can be expedited to meet delivery deadlines.

“PEC is a very important part of Australia’s energy future,” says Mr Italiano. “Granting CSSI status to this project is a really positive development and a clear indication of how important PEC is to the evolution of the National Energy Market (NEM),” he says.

The interconnector will create a diversified supply path between SA and NSW, which will reduce the impact of outages in extreme weather.

“Any section of the network could break down and you could still have energy flowing around the system. It’s a very significant contribution to the system’s security,” says Mr Italiano.

Project at a glance:

- The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to be displayed in the second half of 2020

- Major construction to start by mid 2021

- Robertstown in SA to Buronga in NSW delivered by the end of 2022

- Remaining section from Buronga to Wagga Wagga to be delivered by mid 2023.

TransGrid has engaged with the market to identify potential contracting partners to deliver the project. We are launching a formal process in the coming weeks and will receive tenders by early December 2019.

TransGrid has begun engaging communities along the corridor to begin preparing an EIS. All impacted landholders will be contacted directly. We look forward to engaging with many more communities and stakeholders on the design and impacts.

TransGrid is committed to maintaining a reliable and efficient power network. Our network connects more than three million homes, businesses and communities to a safe, reliable and affordable electricity supply. Our transmission network transports electricity from various sources, including wind, solar, hydro and coal power plants.

Source: Transgrid



Tragowel Solar Farm

Location: Tragowel, Victoria

Capacity: 510 MW

Developer: Blue Sky

LGA: Gannawarra Council

Estimated cost: $500mil

Status: Approved by council

Description: The application was advertised by council to surrounding property owners and occupiers and one objection was received. The project is dependent on the KerangLink upgrade being undertaken by 2026. Blue Sky is a part of property developer New Sky Group, which is based in China with an Australian division in Melbourne.

Contact: Andrew Almenara

Manager, Project Delivery

New Sky Group

Tel: (03) 9252 3300



Power boost for Kingaroy with new wind farm creating 100 new jobs

1 September

A $128 million wind farm in the South Burnett Regional Council area has been approved by the Palaszczuk Government creating 100 new jobs for regional Queenslanders.

Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, Cameron Dick said the wind farm is expected to be operational by next year.

“The Queensland Government is committed to supporting investment in regional Queensland and renewable energy projects,” Mr Dick said.

“During construction 100 new jobs will be created and a there will be a further five ongoing jobs once the wind farm is operational.

“It’s a huge jobs boost for the area and will help us achieve our renewable energy target.”

Mr Dick said, once complete, the 64 megawatt wind farm would be the second one in operation in the area with Coopers Gap initially approved in 2017.

“Wind farms don’t just provide an economic boost for the state, the environmental benefits are equally important,” he said.

“As more people call Queensland home, we need to continue to support sustainable ways to provide power to existing and new houses and businesses.

“This project will deliver 16 new turbines and, coupled with the 123 turbines in nearby Coopers Gap, that’s nearly 140 turbines delivering power to the region.”

Minister for Energy Dr Anthony Lynham said this project added to the state’s numerous renewable projects, placing further downward pressure on electricity prices and taking us closer to our renewables target of 50% by 2030.

“Queensland’s renewable revolution is full steam ahead and we continue to show the way for the rest of the nation,” Dr Lynham said.

“This project is one part of over $1.6 billion worth of renewable energy investment underway or recently operating in the Darling Downs and South West regions, creating more than 1000 jobs in construction and 860 megawatts of renewable generation capacity.”

This includes Australia’s biggest wind farm Coopers Gap Wind Farm, 250 kilometres north-west of Brisbane between Dalby and Kingaroy, has a total capacity of 453 megawatts. It is the largest wind farm by capacity in Australia with enough energy to power 264,000 Australian homes.

A spokesperson for Australian Energy Wind Farm said construction would commence as early as March 2020.

“Once constructed the wind farm is expected to generate enough energy to power the equivalent of around 35,000 homes and will reduce carbon dioxide output by an estimated 150,000 tonnes each year,” she said.

“Wind farm technology has significantly advanced during recent years and the 16 turbines on site will each produce between 4-5.5 megawatts of energy.

“Before operations commence, we will be upgrading local roads leading to the site and delivering the associated infrastructure such as a substation.”

Source: Queensland Government

NOTE: AltEnergy calls this project the Kingaroy Wind Farm as per Australian Energy Wind Farm’s project website found at


METKA EGN will supply solar power to one of Australia's largest super market chains

2 September

MYTILINEOS S.A. (RIC: MYTr.AT, Bloomberg: MYTIL.GA) announces that its subsidiary METKA EGN has recently signed a 10-year electricity supply contract (PPA) with Coles, Australia's second largest super market chain. The electricity will derive exclusively from renewable sources.

Specifically, 220 GW/h will be produced annually to power Australia's electricity system through three privately owned by METKA EGN photovoltaic parks in the New South Wales Region. With the use of solar energy, carbon dioxide emissions will be reduced by 180,000 tonnes per year.

Coles' wide network of stores will cover 10% of its energy needs by purchasing 70% of the power generated by the three METKA EGN projects with total capacity of 120MW.

Construction of the photovoltaic parks (as part of the first 250MW total investment portfolio of production licenses / under a “Build, Operate & Transfer” model acquired by METKA EGN in 2019) is scheduled to begin immediately, with facilities expected to start supplying Coles and the grid in July 2020.

Coles is today one of Australia's leading retail chains, with more than 2,500 stores nationwide. With this partnership, METKA EGN marks its dynamic entry in the Australian market, and now has presence in all five continents.

METKA EGN is internationally established as a provider of clean energy solutions, in an economic and business environment that seeks outlets to reduce carbon emissions, as a result of increased political pressure and public opinion.

MYTILINEOS is committed to sustainable development through the protection of the environment and the use of renewable energy sources.

The contract value for METKA EGN is AU $ 91m. (Approx. € 55.5 million).




Star of the South Energy Project

We’re investigating the Star of the South project – an exciting new offshore development that has the potential to power hundreds of thousands of homes with clean renewable energy while creating jobs and investment.

With the project in early stages of development, we’re keen to hear from you on a range of topics – whether you’re a Gippsland local or someone with an interest in Australia’s first proposed offshore wind project.

Please ask us a question or complete our survey to share your views. You can learn more about the project on this site or contact us if you prefer a conversation. Please note, our 1800 number is temporarily out of service, so please call us during business hours on (03) 9108 4000.

More information available here:

Source: Start of the South



Langs Crossing Solar Farm

The Western Regional Planning Panel has approved ITP Development’s proposed 5 MW Langs Crossing Solar Farm in Hay, NSW. The project has an expected capital investment value of $7.5mil and will be built using single axis trackers.


Meridian and Garage Project launch Turbine beer to celebrate renewable energy certification

3 September

Energy is a vital ingredient in beer - it heats the brewing water, runs the mill, brew house, chilling and pumps and packaging lines.

Garage Project's choices around the energy company they partner with and how they generate electricity have never been more important.

In the windiest city in the world, in the shadow of Wellington's iconic Brooklyn turbine, it was a natural choice for Garage Project to partner with Meridian, who only produce electricity from 100% renewable resources, including from the Brooklyn Turbine itself.

Turbine™ Pale Ale is a fresh spin on a traditional style and celebrates a new partnership giving Garage Project the power to brew in a more sustainable way. Brewed with a bright golden, juicy malt base, balanced with thirst quenching bitterness and bursting with citrus and tropical hop character.

The collaboration between Garage Project brewery and Meridian, New Zealand's largest renewable electricity generator, marks the first time a certified renewable energy product has been made available in New Zealand - providing Garage Project with a clear means to recognise and celebrate their preference for renewable electricity generation.

Michael Healy, CMO Meridian said: "there has been strong demand for certified renewable energy for some time. As New Zealand's largest renewable energy generator it's only natural we find ways to make this happen."

The renewable energy certificate provided by NZECS allows consumers of electricity to purchase certification for the particular type and volume of electricity generation they value. So whilst Garage Project's brewery isn't directly plugged into the turbine, the electricity used is matched on an annual basis with 100% renewable energy generated from Meridian's Brooklyn Turbine.

Having an understanding of how electricity is generated allows consumers to consider the environmental impact of electricity generation, enabling them to make an active choice to which generator to partner with.

Garage Project co-founder, Jos Ruffell, says they're proud to be the first to use Meridian's certified renewable energy mark made possible by Meridian's participation in the NZECS.

"It's important to set an example and show you can be in business and do your bit for sustainability too. We can brew the beer we love, be sustainable, and celebrate Wellington, the city we love. Turbine™ Pale Ale is all of these things."

Source: Meridian



Benger Solar Farm

Harvey Shire Council has considered an application for a Renewable Energy Facility located in Benger in the intensive farming zone and public advertising will now commence. Given the scale of the proposal, after the advertising period, a further report will be brought to council. The application proposes a Renewable Energy Facility operating approximately 265,200 solar PV panels on a single-axis tracking system.

South Energy is proposing the 100 MW Benger Solar Farm located ~15km south of Harvey and 20km NE of Bunbury in Harvey Shire, South-West WA. The project site spans across ~187 hectares of land already predominantly cleared. High voltage electricity infrastructure close by facilitates connection to the Wholesale Electricity Market (WEM) via the SWIS grid.


Vector and Watercare to build New Zealand’s first floating solar array

3 September

Auckland’s electricity and water utility companies today announced a project to build New Zealand’s largest solar array in the heart of Auckland’s North Shore, by floating it on top of the Rosedale wastewater treatment pond near the Northern Motorway.

Vector Group CEO Simon Mackenzie and Watercare chief executive Raveen Jaduram said the system, delivered by Vector PowerSmart, would mark a number of firsts for New Zealand.

“It’s the first time floating solar will be seen in New Zealand and the first megawatt-scale solar project to be confirmed,” said Mr Mackenzie.

“It can generate enough power over a year to run the equivalent of 200 average New Zealand homes for a year.”

“Even larger systems are already common overseas and with reports out of Australia of costs as low as 4-5c per kWh, when that scale arrives here we’ll see solar’s real potential to set a new cap on the wholesale market which over the past few days has been around double that”.

“Vector PowerSmart’s capability to design and deliver this innovative system shows how new energy solutions are key to helping business reach their economic and environmental goals, and we’re proud to be working with Watercare to help it achieve both”.

Watercare chief executive Raveen Jaduram said, “The project is a fantastic example of how utilities can work together for the benefit of their communities”.

“As a large user of energy, it’s important that we look at ways of reducing our environmental footprint and becoming more self-sufficient.  Innovative solutions like this on top of wastewater ponds are a smart way to reduce operational costs”.

The array will be used to supplement electricity from the grid as well as cogeneration from biogas, which is already generated on-site from wastewater treatment.  The electricity is used for pumping and aeration for natural bacteria that help break down the waste as part of the treatment process.

Watercare has an ambitious programme to reduce its energy use by 8GWh by 2022 and to achieve energy self-sufficiency at its Mangere and Rosedale wastewater treatment plants by 2025. Solar installations such as this one will help Watercare achieve its targets.

Highlights of New Zealand’s first floating solar project:

- The project is funded and hosted by Watercare and delivered by Vector PowerSmart

- First floating solar confirmed for deployment in New Zealand

- Located on Watercare’s Rosedale Wastewater Treatment Plant on Auckland’s North Shore

- Visible to road users heading north along State highway 1, which is adjacent to the site

- First megawatt-scale solar system confirmed in NZ, each year generating enough electricity to power 200 average NZ homes for a year

- More than 2700 solar panels (Vector Lights has 248) and 3000 floating pontoons

- Largest solar project of any type so far confirmed in New Zealand and more than twice the size of the country’s current largest solar array

- Reduction of 145 tonnes of CO2e each year – equivalent to the emissions from driving 66 cars in NZ

Source: Vector NZ


juwi Renewable Energy to complete Greenough Solar expansion

3 September

Bright Energy Investments (BEI) has appointed juwi Renewable Energy Pty Ltd to complete the construction of the Greenough River Solar Farm – Stage 2 Project.

The appointment of juwi Renewable Energy, the Brisbane-based subsidiary of the integrated renewable energy company juwi, follows the administration and subsequent termination of previous contractor RCR O’Donnell Griffin Pty Ltd in late 2018. An extensive process associated with the contractor’s administration and liquidation has since been completed.

With site works halted since November, Bright Energy Investments sought expressions of interest from suitably qualified parties to complete the project, from which juwi has been selected.

BEI General Manager Tom Frood said the new contract will enable the 30MW expansion to recommence immediately, with a revised scheduled for completion in early 2020.

“The expansion of the Greenough River Solar Farm will be an important contributor to Western Australia’s energy supplies and there has been a lot of hard work to gather the project back together and renegotiate a way forward,” Mr Frood said.

The failure of the previous contractor was unrelated to the Greenough River project and BEI is looking forward to seeing the installation of more than 300,000 additional solar PV panels alongside the original 10MW facility. The panels will operate on a NEXTracker single axis tracking system as originally planned, rotating to follow the sun.

Once operational, the solar farm will provide additional power to the SWIS, equivalent to the average usage of more than 16,300 households.

The GRSF - Stage 2 expansion is due for completion in early 2020.

Source: Bright Energy Investments


2020 Large-scale Renewable Energy Target capacity achieved

4 September

The Clean Energy Regulator has now approved enough capacity to guarantee that the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target of 33,000 gigawatt hours of additional renewable energy will be met in 2020.

Today, the Clean Energy Regulator Chair David Parker announced this major milestone for renewable energy in Australia.

“It is now certain Australia will generate enough renewable energy to meet the 2020 Large-scale Renewable Energy Target,” Mr Parker said.

The Clean Energy Regulator stated that 6400 megawatts of large-scale renewable capacity had to be built between 2017 and 2019 to generate sufficient electricity to meet the target.

On 30 August 2019, this milestone was met ahead of schedule with the approval of four large wind and solar power stations, with a combined capacity of 406 megawatts.

“This achievement represents the hard work of a growing and dynamic renewables industry,” said Mr Parker.

The approval of the 148.5 megawatt Cattle Hill Wind Farm, owned by Goldwind and partners, saw the milestone surpassed. The Cattle Hill Wind Farm is built on the hills above Waddamana Power Station, Tasmania’s first hydro scheme that was opened in 1916. Also of interest, the first large power station commissioned in 2017 was Goldwind’s 175 megawatt White Rock Wind Farm in NSW.

“Not only did Goldwind kick off the momentum of renewable energy investments, their Cattle Hill Wind Farm pushed us over the 6400 megawatts of renewable energy capacity,” Mr Parker said.

While the capacity target has been achieved, the Large-scale Renewable Energy Target will continue to provide a framework for ongoing renewable energy investment.

“Coincidentally, we are currently tracking another 6410 megawatts of renewable energy to be built over the coming years. While future investment faces a number of constraints, this is by no means the end of renewable energy investment in Australia, with markets continuing to innovate and adapt to opportunities and challenges,” Mr Parker said.

Source: Clean Energy Regulator


Renewables succeed despite naysayers

4 September

The Federal Government will achieve the 2020 large-scale renewable energy target (RET) despite the best efforts of the Coalition to undermine its success.

“This is a moment to celebrate. Large-scale renewables have created thousands of jobs and helped make our electricity system cleaner,” said the Climate Council’s Head of Research, Dr Martin Rice.

“Wind and solar are now the lowest cost way to generate electricity in Australia,” he said.

“However, the Energy Minister Angus Taylor can claim no credit for this. He wanted the renewable energy target to be abolished,” said Dr Rice.

The target was introduced in 2001 during John Howard’s prime ministership and was adjusted numerous times. In 2015, under Prime Minister Tony Abbott, the Federal Government wound back the target by 20% (from 41,000 GWh to 33,000 GWh).

“Despite the naysayers, this policy worked and there are now dozens of large-scale renewable energy projects in Australia. Fortunately, the states and territories have led the charge in the absence of Federal Government leadership,” said the Climate Council’s Senior Researcher, Tim Baxter.

“The most important question is what happens post-2020 given the Federal Government won’t extend the target. It seems likely that the renewable electricity industry is now sustainable in Australia without support, but there are serious questions over whether these record levels of growth will continue,” he said.

“The Clean Energy Council says it’s starting to see a slow down in new projects because investors are reluctant to make financial commitments without more certainty. We urgently need a credible climate and energy policy to provide that certainty,” said Mr Baxter.

Source: Clean Energy Council


Record investment in renewables confirms 2020 Renewable Energy Target will be met early

4 September

The Liberal National Government has now confirmed we will reach the 2020 large-scale Renewable Energy Target ahead of time, as we continue to support record investment in renewable energy.

The Clean Energy Regulator has advised that the 6,400 megawatts of additional large scale wind and solar generation needed to meet our 2020 target of 33,000 gigawatt hours of renewable energy has now been commissioned. This has been achieved in less than two years, despite many experts saying the target would not be met.

We are a Government that delivers on our promises. Under this Government’s leadership, Australia will beat its 2020 and 2030 emissions reduction commitments while ensuring our economy remains strong. The $3.5 billion Climate Solutions Package maps out how we will achieve our 2030 Paris target down to the last tonne.

In 2018, Australia led the world in clean energy investment, with more than double the per-capita investment of countries like France, Germany and the United Kingdom. With the RET set to be exceeded, investment is not slowing down.

Our challenge is to integrate this investment in a way that delivers an affordable and reliable system. Wind and solar need to be backed up to meet peak demand, which is why the Government has invested $1.43 billion in reliable generation and storage, supporting a high-tech expansion of the Snowy Hydro scheme and the development of MarinusLink, the second Bass Strait interconnector needed to turn Tasmania’s Battery of the Nation vision into reality.

The Government is working with states who are committed to managing this transition in a sensible and balanced way, on everything from keeping existing generation running at full tilt, to the transmission upgrades needed to support reliability.

Only the Liberal National Government has a plan to deliver affordable, 24/7 reliable power, while meeting our emissions reductions commitments.

Source: Federal Government


Sustainable electricity supply options for the Daintree

4 September

The Queensland Government is working with the Daintree community and stakeholders to deliver the Daintree Electricity Supply Feasibility Study.

This work will assess and compare possible fit-for-purpose options to deliver a reliable and sustainable electricity supply for the Daintree region.

While numerous studies have been conducted in the past, these have not fully investigated:

- how electricity supply options would be delivered from a commercial perspective

- the costs that Daintree households and businesses would be responsible for, including how much they would be charged for electricity.

The new study will fill these gaps and comprehensively canvass all aspects of energy supply, including recent advances in electricity generation and storage techniques.

This will ensure an informed decision can be made on the best path forward for the Daintree community.

The July edition of the community newsletter, Sustainable electricity supply options for the Daintree (PDF, 1.4MB), has been sent to Daintree residents to provide information about the study.

Two-stage approach

To identify the costs, benefits and trade-offs of the different electricity supply options, stage one of the study will:

- evaluate the energy supply options presented in previous studies

- analyse issues around potential project costs and energy affordability

- consider potential environmental and cultural heritage impacts

- examine infrastructure requirements.

Building on these findings, stage two of the study will:

- explore the most feasible options in more detail

- identify how each option might be delivered from a commercial perspective

- consider the roles and responsibility of community members, key stakeholders and the Queensland Government.

Have your say

We want to hear what you think about electricity supply for the Daintree region, and the relevant commercial, technical, environmental, social and cultural impacts and opportunities.

In the second half of the year we expect to discuss the results of stage one of the study with the Daintree community.

To receive updates on the study or ask any questions, please contact the Department of Natural

Resources, Mines and Energy by:



134 387


Daintree Electricity Supply Feasibility Study

PO Box 15216


Source: Queensland Government


Genex welcomes Queensland Government funding package for the Kidston Pumped Storage Hydro transmission line

4 September

Genex Power Limited (ASX: GNX) (Genex or Company) welcomes the announcement from the Queensland Government in relation to the multi-million-dollar electrical infrastructure funding package for the Kidston Pumped Storage Hydro project (K2-Hydro or Project) transmission line.

The announcement states that the Queensland Government will provide up to $132M in funding towards the construction of the 186km single-circuit transmission line from Kidston to Mount Fox (Transmission Line), which will be built, owned and operated by State-owned transmission network service provider Powerlink Queensland (Powerlink).

The announcement follows Powerlink’s Offer to Connect which secures the Project’s rights to connect to and operate using the Transmission Line, and approval by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) via Powerlink of the Project’s Generator Performance Standards in June 2019 (refer ASX announcement 14 June 2019).

As part of the announcement, Hon. Annastacia Palaszczuk, Queensland State Premier, stated in respect of the Kidston Hub:

“This infrastructure will support the development of a clean energy hub in the North, providing jobs, investment and energy security.”

Hon. Dr. Anthony Lynham, Minister for Natural Resources and Energy of the Queensland Government, stated:

“The Genex project itself will have a peak construction workforce of about 500 people per annum for the first two years, 250 in the final year and 30 permanent operational jobs… And connecting 250MW of pumped hydro capacity will help make the North Queensland electricity network more reliable.”

Commenting on the announcement, Chief Executive Officer of Genex, James Harding said:

“Genex is delighted with the Queensland Government’s announcement of a significant funding package to enable the construction of the Kidston Pumped Storage Hydro Project Transmission Line. This complements the project loan extended by the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (refer ASX announcement 11 July 2019) and represents the key external funding requirement necessary to complete the project financing and commence construction.

Further, the Transmission Line will now unlock additional stages for the Kidston Clean Energy Hub, including up to 270MW of additional solar and up to 150MW of wind.

We would like to thank the Queensland Government for their support and look forward to continuing to work together over the coming weeks to finalise arrangements for this important increment to a stable electricity network in North Queensland, which will secure power supply to local communities and unlock further clean energy generation in the region.”

Source: Genex Power


WiNRG obtains contract for PV project in Australia

In Glenrowan (Victoria), Australia, around 250 km away from Melbourne, a photovoltaic plant with a total capacity of 140 MWp on an area of 342 hectares will be installed. The team of WiNRG will take care for the coordination of the legal and technical due diligence process, the module purchase and will give support for the EPC selection as well as for contract negotiations.

The construction phase of the plant is expected to start in the second quarter of 2020 and should be completed by the end of the same year. On an area which is equivalent to around 480 football pitches, about 261,100 MWh of sustainable energy per year will be produced with approx. 350,000 solar modules. This is enough to supply approx. 65,000 four-person households with energy and to save around 110,000 tons of CO2.

Source: WiNRG


Wastewater treatment plant to use gasification for waste disposal

5 September

On behalf of the Australian Government, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has today announced $6.2 million in funding to Logan City Council (LCC) to develop the Loganholme Wastewater Treatment Plant Gasification Facility at Loganholme, Queensland.

Once complete, the $17.28 million project will be the first time gasification has been incorporated into a wastewater treatment plant in Australia. The facility will help to reduce the volume of sewage sludge (known as biosolids) waste disposal at Logan’s largest sewage treatment plant by about 90 per cent.

LCC’s largest wastewater treatment plant at Loganholme serves 300,000 people and produces approximately 34,000 tonnes of biosolids each year. Biosolids are currently dewatered via an energy intensive mechanical drying and treatment process before being transferred for land application.

A gasifier works by creating gaseous fuel from the biosolids which have been dewatered, dried and treated at high temperatures. The material produced is a biochar containing carbon, phosphorus and potassium that could be used as an environmentally friendly soil conditioner. LCC intends to market this biochar once the facility becomes operational.

The gasifier used for the process would reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions emitted by the plant. Gas produced during the process will be utilised within the system as part of the biosolid drying process. An onsite solar power system will also help to support the facility to be almost entirely renewable and energy neutral.

The gasification project is expected to be deployed in parallel with Loganholme’s existing operations so the plant can operate as per usual.

ARENA CEO Darren Miller said the project will offer significant opportunities to be replicated by other councils.

“Logan City Council’s demonstration project is expected to deliver a commercial business case for the gasification of biosolids for similarly sized wastewater treatment plants across Australia. The key knowledge learned from this installation will be significant given the first-of-kind deployment.

“This innovative process will reduce energy costs, emissions and significantly reduce the volume of waste from the sewage treatment process,” he said.

Acting Road and Water Infrastructure Director, Daryl Ross said Logan City Council was committed to finding a more viable and sustainable management solution that also lessened the environmental impact.

“At present, six truckloads of biosolids are taken 300 kilometres to Darling Downs for land application each day. That costs $1.8 million annually and accounts for 30 per cent of the operating costs of the plant,” he said.

“Costs are increasing due to rising electricity prices, increasing population and tightening of government regulations on carbon reduction and managing persistent organic pollutants in soils,” he said.

Trials to prove concept will be completed in February next year and construction is set to begin July 2020 with the facility to be fully operational by July 2021.

Source: ARENA


Waipipi Wind Farm financial close

6 September

Tilt Renewables Limited (TLT) is pleased to confirm that financial close was achieved earlier today on the 133.3MW Waipipi Wind Farm (formerly referred to as the Waverley Wind Farm).  The project,

when  completed,  will  be  TLT’s  largest  single  asset  in  New  Zealand  and,  together  with  the  under‐construction 336MW Dundonnell Wind Farm in Victoria, Australia, will help  the TLT installed asset portfolio expand to more than 1.1GW.

Construction activity will commence shortly at the Waipipi site now that construction contracts have been signed and notices to proceed have been issued with the following delivery partners:

Turbine Supply and Install: Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy Pty Ltd

Electrical Balance of Plant & 110kV transmission line:  ElectroNet Services Limited

Civil Balance of Plant: Higgins Contractors Limited

Grid Connection: Transpower New Zealand Limited

Construction of Waipipi Wind Farm is expected to finish towards the end of the financial year ending 31 March 2021.  Once fully commissioned, the project will make the following annual contribution to the TLT business (assuming average wind conditions):

- Average energy production of 455GWh, equivalent to powering approximately 65,000 New Zealand houses

- EBITDAF of approximately NZ$ 22 million from FY2022 to FY2026 

- Cashflow of approximately NZ$ 9 million after debt principal/interest and taxes. 

100% of energy produced by the Waipipi Wind Farm, for the first 20 years of operation, will be sold to Genesis  Energy  Limited  (Genesis)  through  the  largest  wholesale  energy  offtake  signed  to  date,  by anyone,  in  New  Zealand.    The  resultant  energy  pricing  certainty  has  been  critical  in  securing  an attractive  financing  package  from  four  commercial  banks  under  a  non‐recourse,  project  finance structure. 

The total cost for the 31 turbine wind farm and associated civil and electrical balance of plant works,

11km  of  110kV  overhead  transmission  line  and  augmentation  works  at  the  Transpower Waverley substation will be approximately NZ$277M, funded from the following sources:

- NZ$  241M  construction  and  term  debt  facilities,  provided  by  Commonwealth  Bank  of Australia, Credit Agricole CIB, MUFG Bank and Siemens Bank GmbH

- NZ$ 37M equity contribution, funded directly from TLT cash reserves.  

TLT CEO Deion Campbell said “the Tilt Renewables team is very proud to kick off construction of the Waipipi Wind Farm.  This is a significant milestone, which we have achieved by leveraging our unique competitive advantages of: the best in market renewables development pipeline; strategic outcome‐driven relationships with high quality  suppliers,  contractors and lenders; and a  highly  skilled  team focused on delivering long‐term shareholder value.  The ability to generate and execute on growth opportunities concurrently on either side of the Tasman, sets us ahead of the pack as a proven leader in renewable energy deployment across Australasia”. 

TLT has been supported by the following advisers on this transaction:

- Financial adviser ‐ MUFG Advisory

- Lead project counsel and NZ financing legal counsel ‐ Anderson Lloyd

- Financing legal counsel ‐ Gilbert + Tobin.

Source: Tilt Renewables

View PDF