Snowy Hydro Limited has unveiled plans to invest in a “battery ready” 100 megawatt solar facility in Tailem Bend in South Australia to “boost its generation capacity” and grow its Lumo Energy business.
To deliver the project, Snowy Hydro inked a long-term Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with experienced renewable energy investor and developer Equis under which it has agreed to purchase 100% of the power produced from the plant for at least 22 years.
Snowy Hydro CEO and Managing Director Paul Broad said the move will allow the company to access a further 100 megawatts of renewable solar generation in SA, with the ability to install up to 100 megawatts of large-scale battery storage on the Tailem Bend site.
“This is an exciting opportunity for Snowy Hydro to source renewable generation in South Australia to complement our existing capacity,” Snowy Hydro CEO and Managing Director Paul Broad said.
“We are pleased to be working with Equis to deliver more renewable energy to South Australia, backed by reliable fast-start thermal capacity. Importantly, this unique generation facility at Tailem Bend is also ‘battery ready’ with the ability to install up to 100 megawatts of large-scale battery storage on the site.”
David Russell, CEO of Equis, said the project – which will be constructed alongside a Showy Hydro owned 28.8MW diesel-fired station – will be one of the lowest cost solar projects in Australia with its combined power and large-scale generation certificates price approximately 40% less then prevailing SA market prices.
“We are delighted to partner Snowy Hydro on the Tailem Bend solar project to build one of Australia’s lowest cost solar generation projects with a unique “battery-storage ready” design, further enhancing the project’s long term attractiveness as a stable, low cost source of power,” Mr Russell said.
Snowy Hydro currently owns and operates a total of 5500MW of generation capacity across Australia, including 164 MW in South Australia.
“We combine the power of the mighty Snowy Scheme with gas and diesel fired peaking generators to deliver a flexible and reliable mix of energy to our growing customer base every day,” Mr Broad said.
“Through our award winning retail companies – Red Energy and Lumo Energy – Snowy Hydro services more than one million gas and electricity customer accounts. We pride ourselves on superior customer service and look forward to growing our Lumo Energy retail customer base in South Australia.”
Construction of the solar farm is expected to commence in early 2017, with the project to be delivered the following year.