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S.A. tender attracts 60 proposals for “next-gen” renewables and storage

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Tesla charging stations at Hornsdale wind farm. Photo: Giles Parkinson

The South Australia Labor government says it has received nearly 60 proposals from local and international companies for next generation renewable energy technologies and storage under its Renewable Technology Fund.

The deadline for the tender fell a day before the recent unveiling of the Tesla-Neoen big battery’s connection agreement with ElectraNet and news that the 100MW/129MWh project was already half complete.

The Tesla-Neoen big battery at the Hornsdale wind farm will likely account for around $20 million of the RTF, and the government call for more projects has attracted interest from a range of technologies, including  batteries, bioenergy, pumped hydro, thermal, compressed air and flywheel.

State energy minister Tom Koutsantonis highlighted the three proposals from Adelaide-based 1414 Degrees, which is developing a “silicon battery” that stores heat and energy, and is looking for its first commercial-scale demonstration project.

Koutsantonis said among 1414’s proposals was a pilot 10MWh thermal storage project that could allow SA Water to store some of the energy it generates from biogas produced at the Glenelg Waste Water Treatment Plant.

The 1414 technology, while often described as a “battery”, actually focuses more on heat storage, and sees its biggest potential market in places like Europe, which relies heavily on district heating, particularly in winter,

“What this result shows is that companies around the world recognise the potential that exists in the energy and storage sector in South Australia,” Koutsantonis said in a statement.

“The applicants include some of the leading global companies operating at the forefront of these emerging technologies. We also received very exciting proposals from local businesses, demonstrating the incredible capability of the entrepreneurs we have in this State.

“The Renewable Technology Fund will not only help deliver clean, reliable and affordable power, it will also create new energy and renewables jobs in South Australia.”

The state government faces an election next March, the result of which has been complicated by the announcement that Nick Xenophon will quit the Senate and stand for state parliament, choosing a marginal Liberal seat and promising to field at least 20 candidates.

Xenophon says he wants to hold the balance of power in the state – although some suggest that he could actually become Premier.

Xenophon, a former state parliamentarian who originally ran on an “anti-pokies” ticket, voted with the conservatives to privatise the state’s electricity industry, and then emerged as a major critic of wind energy. South Australia has 1,700MW of wind power capacity, around half of all the capacity in the country.

The new fund is designed to support “firming renewable generation” such as storage or other technology that would allow wind and solar farms to provide increased  increased inertia and system stability.

It also sought proposals for bulk energy storage – such as pumped hydro, compressed air or thermal storage – and for bioenergy from agricultural wastes or by-products.

Koutsantonis said successful applicants will be notified in the coming months. Presumably the government will be keen to square away the investments before it goes into “caretaker” mode.

 

  

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  • The Awul Truth

    Has 1414 ever released a technical report or data? Until then I’m going to assume this is vaporware.

  • solarguy

    Now watch XENOPHON spew anti wind and anti storage BS. This is a political deal masterminded by the FF industry.

    Am I paranoid? Well let’s wait and see.

    • Not at all. This is how politics in Australia operates.

      • Joe

        The MCA donating to the Xman?

    • Rod

      Rupert is saying thanks in a big way for the media concentration. About 10 Slippery Nick articles in the SA rag since the announcement.

    • Danny Bocchino

      Maybe. You should read SA Best party’s policy on Climate Change. As quoted from its website for its policy/principle on Climate Change = “Climate Change & Energy
      Climate change is real and poses a huge challenge for our environment and economic future. Australia must stick to the Paris agreement, which involves reducing greenhouse gases by 26-28% on 2005 levels by 2030.

      This must involve a smart energy mix that provides affordable and reliable baseload power, and electricity grid stability. It also involves making sure we have enough gas for domestic consumption, instead of the current situation where Australian gas is being sold overseas at half the price it is here.

      Examples of what needs to be done:

      Have an efficient and effective Emissions Intensity Scheme (EIS) based on world’s best practice
      Australia needs to quickly move toward a cleaner and more affordable energy future. This will involve reduced reliance on economically unsustainable technologies
      Government policies need to facilitate innovative and job creating energy industry opportunities through research, adoption, education and manufacturing of new technologies 

      Australian energy resources should be available to Australians before being available for sale to the rest of the world. An allocation for domestic use prior to export would also help lower the cost of energy for consumers. And gas producers must comply with a strict ‘use it or lose it’ rule to their gas reserves, not keep the resources in the ground until a time that best suits them

      Australian taxpayer funded research into renewable energy and climate change needs to be made more easily available to Australian industry to ensure our competitive advantage in these areas is encouraged 

      The importation of substandard and unsafe products related to renewable energy and or climate change must be stopped.” Check out its web link = https://sabest.org.au/policy-principles/ Have a nice day and just not be paranoid about Nick X. Thanks.

  • Joe

    SA with Premier Jay at the tiller…The Happening State, yes.

    • Elon Musk might set up a spaceport there. Astrotech hub combined with renewables would be an employment boost and tourist attraction.

      • Joe

        The first of the Elon’s passengers into space should be…The COALition. Send ’em up and leave ’em hanging up there.