Goldwind Australia has been awarded a $10 million grant for a hybrid dispatchable renewable energy project under the NSW Government’s Emerging Energy Program.
The Emerging Energy Program supports the development of innovative large-scale electricity generation and storage projects, which enhance electricity system reliability and security in NSW.
Subject to approvals, Goldwind plans to integrate six 12MW gas reciprocating engines combined with a 12 MW / 4 MWh battery into an existing renewable energy farm. A new pipeline is proposed to transport the gas. The gas engine and battery storage project is planned to have a total capacity of 84MW.
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Goldwind Australia managing director John Titchen said the proposed project would become the first integrated gas, battery, and renewable precinct in Australia.
“Goldwind Australia is very pleased to be awarded funding for the proposed hybrid dispatchable renewable energy project under the NSW Government’s Emerging Energy Program. The project is in response to the growing demand for low emission dispatchable generation sources,” he said.
Minister for Energy Matt Kean said firmed renewables are the most economic form of reliable generation and will drive the biggest change in our electricity system’s history.
“We want NSW households and businesses to have some of the cheapest and cleanest electricity in the world and we’re firming low-cost, large-scale renewables with new technologies such as gas-battery hybrids to do that,” Mr Kean said.
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Hybrid battery and gas plants can operate with greater flexibility and faster start-up speeds than conventional gas generation, as the integrated batteries eliminate the gap in energy supply during engine startup.
Goldwind recognises that dispatchable projects can lead to greater penetration of renewables and the transition to net zero emissions, whilst enhancing energy security. The project may benefit from favourable gas prices which are currently at a four-year low with AEMO predicting them to reduce further. Goldwind is also exploring opportunities to develop battery and pumped hydro projects in the National Electricity Market.
Goldwind has also explored the use of dual fuel reciprocating engines, capable of operating on alternative fuel sources, including biofuels, and will seek to include this capability in the project. Goldwind is also exploring the possibility of including hydrogen production and hydrogen fuel substitution in the project, with a view to operating the plant on the lowest possible emissions basis.