NSW's new electricity supply contract is bringing a 100-megawatt battery to Darlington Point, to help bring solar power to schools, hospitals and government buildings across the area.
The lithium-ion battery will be built next to the Darlington Point solar farm and substation, providing electricity storage and dispatch ahead of the Liddell power station closure in 2022.
The battery is being built by Edify Energy, in accordance with the 3.2 billion dollar energy contract. Also included in the contract is Shell Energy, who will have operational rights to a 60MW partition, over half of the battery's full capacity.
The battery is expected to be completed by early 2023 and will alleviate concerns about a possible power shortage due to the Liddell closure. The Liddell site once closed is currently expected to hold another battery, one that holds 150MW.
Shell Energy CEO Greg Joiner said that the battery and their partnership with the NSW government and Edify would be key to lowering emissions and establishing long-term renewable power.
"Providing products and services that help large energy users decarbonise and meet their emissions goals is a key focus for us in assembling the building blocks of a cleaner energy system in Australia," Mr Joiner said.
Energy Minister Matt Kean said that the battery would provide much-needed electricity at a good value for residents of NSW.
"This battery will help to keep the lights on and keep costs down during peak energy periods, and support more renewable energy to come online."
Edify CEO John Cole said that batteries are 'earning their place' as renewable capacity solutions.
"We are excited to head back into the Riverina community and continue our work with Shell Energy and the NSW Government to make this innovative project a reality," Mr Cole said.
"We are proud to be leading the advancement of batteries to shore up the renewable energy market and to increase the availability of clean, green, low-cost, dispatchable electricity."
Mayor of the Murrumbidgee council Ruth McCrae is keen to have more reliable access and put less pressure on the existing system.
"At different times of the year, we put a lot of pressure on the system to deliver. This may also give us an opportunity to be part of another developer contribution. I would imagine we'll be very engaged with Edify from here on in," she said.
The existing energy contract extends to July 2022, and will then be replaced by the new one.
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