New “mega scale” green hub planned for Northern Territory by Korea giant

A completed Maverick solar system at Borrroloola in the NT. Image: 5B
A completed Maverick solar system at Borrroloola in the NT. Image: 5B

A massive “mega scale” green energy project has been proposed for the Northern Territory which will include wind, solar PV, hydrogen, and battery energy storage systems.

The Northern Territory’s chief minister Natasha Fyles on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Korea industry giant Samsung to develop a massive green energy project.

While there are no specifics on size or exact location as of yet, the MoU paves the way for the NT government and Samsung to investigate the feasibility of a project which would generate clean energy for local manufacturing companies, including Samsung affiliates and help them move to 100 per cent renewables.

A working group comprised of representatives from Samsung and the NT government will be established under the MoU to scope and investigate the feasibility of the project. The MoU will run for a period of two years, during which time suitable locations will be identified.

One of the potential locations already on the list to be investigated is the controversial Middle Arm Sustainable Development Precinct on Darwin harbour.

Several large solar and battery storage projects have already been proposed for the Northern Territory, with the biggest being the Sun Cable project that is targeting new demand in the Darwin area. It is not clear whether this project will set itself up as a competitor to that idea.

“Renewable energy makes economic and environmental sense,” said Fyles. “Signing today’s green energy MoU with Samsung C&T is a key step towards creating local jobs and significantly contributing to the Territory’s drive to become a hub for low emissions sustainable manufacturing.

“The MoU sets out how the NT government and Samsung C&T will work collaboratively to explore options and conduct feasibility investigations including how we can facilitate this project being built in the Territory.

“Samsung knows what Territorian’s know, our solar irradiance and proximity to Asia makes this the ideal place to invest in a green energy future.”

Fyles comments hint at plans for the project to export clean electricity or green hydrogen or green ammonia to the neighbouring Asia Pacific region – as has been envisioned for several projects in the north of the country.

“Samsung C&T is committed to global industry decarbonisation, leveraging the exceptional resources in the Northern Territory,” said Samsung C&T president & CEO of engineering & construction group, Sechul Oh.

“The MOU establishes a collaborative partnership for building a prime hub dedicated to green energy production.

“Together, we aim to decarbonise Australia and South Korea and contribute to the development of a sustainable economy.”

Joshua S. Hill is a Melbourne-based journalist who has been writing about climate change, clean technology, and electric vehicles for over 15 years. He has been reporting on electric vehicles and clean technologies for Renew Economy and The Driven since 2012. His preferred mode of transport is his feet.

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