Energy Insiders Podcast November 7

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The commitment by the new owners of the Whyalla steel works to build 1GW of renewable energy, storage and demand management is not just a story about a big plunge into green energy.

It is the sign of things to come. Consumers have figured out that the best way to cut electricity costs is to generate their own energy.

Households and smaller businesses are figuring this out with rooftop solar, and new data from AEMO shows how much that is transforming the grid in South Australia.

In the past year, rooftop solar accounted for more than 10 per cent of local generation and that will double over the next decade. And if AEMO can find some decent modellers, it will realize it will come attached with a heap of storage.

On Energy Insiders this week,  we discuss this and more issues, including the upcoming float of New Energy Solar, and what it means about solar yields, and the latest take on the proposed National Energy Guarantee, or NEG. Or reNEG.

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To listen to past episodes of Energy Insiders as well as our new podcast Solar Insiders, please click here.

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  • BushAxe

    The OneSteel PHES will be one of the open cut mines near Electranet’s transmission line probably Iron Knight or Chieftain as they both have reasonable elevation overlooking them which would be suitable for a turkey nest dam.

    • David leitch

      Thanks Bushaxe. Open cut will likely be easier than a shaft in terms of the equipment you need at the bottom of the mine. You don’t happen to know the depth of this open cuts do you? I also wonder about the gradient.

      • Andrew Scott

        the iron ore mines are all open cut quarries. There are many of them. They are clustered in three separate areas 50 to 65 kms west of the Whyalla Steelworks.

        Iron Chieftain and Iron Knight mines are located in the Southern Middleback Ranges, with power connections to the nearby Electranet transmission line that runs from Whyalla (Cultana) down through Eyre Peninsula. They are relatively new mines and are still being worked. They are in the form of bench cuts across the upper slopes of the range ie they are not pits yet.
        Pumped hydro hereabouts would seem unlikely

        In the north Middleback Ranges there are much older minesites, including Iron Baron and Iron Prince. The hills were eventually worked down until each mine became a pit. Closures occurred in the 90’s. Some water has since accumulated in the bottom of these pits.
        The pits are not very large or deep relatively speaking (comment acknowledged to be subjective)
        Ore recovery in the area has resumed in recent years – adjacent waste heaps being worked over for beneficiation.
        There is a HV transmission line (established many decades ago by BHP) from Iron Baron to the power station within the Whyalla Steelworks.
        This North Middleback area might have some limited potential for pumped hydro.

        Further north there are the much older mines, Iron Knob and Iron Monarch. They are both pits that are no longer worked,
        Google Iron Monarch Mine and you will see that the pit is large and has a high and sheer north face up to the small remnant of the original hilltop.
        Water has accumulated in the bottom of this quite large pit.
        There is a HV transmission line (also established many decades ago by BHP) from the Iron Knob area to the power station within the Whyalla Steelworks.
        I am guessing that this Iron Monarch area offers the best prospect for a small Pumped Hydro facility.

        • David leitch

          Thanks Andrew Good info.

  • Peter Watt

    Thank you for your EnergyInsiders podcast today. As I listened to Giles and David sympathising with the task of the modellers for the NEG … I could not help but recall Poo Bah’s comment on having been caught out lying about the death of Nanki-Poo, in Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado” … he was adding “merely corroborative detail, intended to give artistic verisimilitude to an otherwise bald and unconvincing narrative”.
    So much of the coalition’s energy policy is, indeed, a bald and unconvincing narrative.

  • Cooma Doug

    Good listen chaps thanks.

    The issue of grid costs and incentives to stay on the grid, some thoughts.

    The products in the home are many. The grid will need the homes perhaps more than the other way around.
    Homes on the grid can gain much by coordinating with ideal partner homes. The grid owners can gain much by utilising the load shifting and various products of the homes as they function in these co ordinated ways.
    How silly would it be if an 8kw solar and battery home is vacant for 3 months while owners are on holidays and the system not utilised beyond grid supply.

    There in lies one major product. Co ordinated vacancy scheduled
    power use. This will give positive value to a fully discharged battery just as often as the fully charged battery.
    We will just start getting used to things and the electric car will change it all again and become the poles and wires.

    As this market unfolds opportunities will appear. Just as they did on the grid as the wholesale market began. Some are there bright as can be but yet to be recognised or appreciated.

  • MrMauricio

    Wenergy insiders with a yupdate!!