Financial investment in Australian renewables down as funding for big batteries skyrockets

Jun 1, 2021 04:13 PM ET
  • Financial dedications for utility-scale renewables projects in Australia have actually slowed to the most affordable level in the past five years, according to the Clean Energy Council (CEC), which exposed investment in large-scale batteries in the nation is booming.
Financial investment in Australian renewables down as funding for big batteries skyrockets
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Just one large-scale renewable energy project was monetarily dedicated in Q1 2021-- the New England Solar Farm in New South Wales-- with the 400MW of new capacity down 45% on the previous quarter and also 30% lower than the 2020 quarterly standard, the renewables organization claimed.

The slowdown implies Q1 2021 saw the most affordable variety of new renewables projects to reach monetary close in a solitary quarter in the past four years.

" This is a deeply worrying fad when, because of the speed of the clean energy change worldwide, the brakes are being put on Australia's guarantee as a renewable resource superpower," said Kane Thornton, CEC chief executive.

Thornton claimed that confidence for brand-new investment in the sector is "truly in limbo right now", with projects experiencing "substantial as well as frequently unforeseen delays" via the grid link procedure, adding that federal government intervention in the energy market-- such as recently's announcement that it will fund a 660MW gas-peaking plant at Kurri Kurri, New South Wales-- is adding to financier uncertainty.

The fall in renewables financial investment comes as economic commitments in utility-scale batteries in Australia rises, boosting from 150MW of capacity in the 4th quarter of 2020 to 600MW in Q1 2021.

According to the CEC, Australian large-scale batteries getting to monetary enclose the very first quarter of 2021 were the 300MW/ 450MWh Victorian Big Battery, the 250MW/ 1,000 MWh Torrens Island Battery in South Australia and also a 50MW/ 50MWh battery energy storage space system at the first stage of the New England Solar Farm.

The favorable storage space numbers follow the magazine of a recent CEC research study that discovered batteries are more affordable than open-cycle gas turbine plants for giving power peaking services in Australia. Comparing a 250MW gas peaker with a 250MW four-hour grid-scale battery, the paper said the battery gives expense savings of greater than 30% while using greater flexibility as well as considerably reducing discharges intensity.

The CEC said last month that 15 large-scale battery storage projects have up until now been announced in Australia this year, representing 6.6 GW of capability and also AU$ 4.3 billion (US$ 3.3 billion) in investment.

Kane Thornton included: "Big batteries have actually come of age, with capitalists identifying the enhancing cost competitiveness in addition to the role they play in providing energy safety and security as well as sustaining renewable resource throughout Australia."

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