ENGIE announces $40m Pelican Point power station upgrade

Pelican Point Power Station, South Australia
Pelican Point Power Station, South Australia

The Pelican Point power station in South Australia will be returned to full capacity of 479MW.

ENGIE made the announcement today, on the same day the company turned off its 1600MW Hazelwood power station in Victoria.

The company said the $40m upgrade would see both of the plant’s gas-fired turbines operational and available to help meet South Australia’s energy demand from July 1.

ENGIE in Australia chief executive officer Alex Keisser said work would begin immediately on the upgrade of the second unit’s turbine, improving its efficiency and reliability, which would lead to a secure and stable supply of energy to customers.

“We will be able to offer an additional 240MW of energy to the South Australian market, while also creating short-term economic activity through the turbine refurbishment program,” Mr Keisser said.

“With the availability of the capacity of Pelican Point at full load, together with ENGIE in Australia’s wind and peaking generation assets, we have a flexible and sound commercial base with which to run our energy portfolio in SA.

“Recent events have highlighted the challenges of the National Electricity Market (NEM) in SA and by customers contracting Pelican Point’s additional capacity, some of the supply pressures experienced in times of high demand could be alleviated.”

ENGIE has secured gas supply and signed electricity offtake agreements with a number of customers, including arrangements with Origin Energy to provide gas to Pelican Point, to help underpin the operation of the capacity of the station’s previously-mothballed second generation unit, subject to future market demands.

ENGIE said it would make both turbines available to the NEM before the refurbishment works begin.