As the South Australian government launched its tender to install the country’s biggest battery storage installation, the Labor Andrews government in neighbouring Victoria was busy announcing its own $20 million tender, seeking proposals from companies to work with the state’s networks to install up to 100MW of grid-scale energy storage by 2018.
Unveiled on Tuesday at the Melbourne headquarters of Tesla, this second round of energy tenders – following on from the large-scale solar round launched earlier this month – aims to attract a variety of storage solutions, including pumped hydro and batteries. It takes the Andrews government’s total investment in energy storage to $25 million.
In a statement on Tuesday, the government said the sort of proposals it was anticipating might include a 20MW battery storage array, such as that could help power a town the size of Bendigo or Ballarat for up to four hours during peak demand periods and avoid outages.
“Storage of this size is a first for Victoria and will drive innovation in our electricity sector and modernise the network – it means more investment and more jobs,” the release said.
Premier Daniel Andrews, whose government has been faced with the closure, this month, of the La Trobe Valley’s Hazelwood coal-fired power plant, said the tenders would help ensure Victoria remained “one of the most reliable energy producers in the world.”
“Our focus is on keeping Victoria’s diverse energy system as affordable, resilient and secure as possible, particularly during peak periods and extreme weather events,” Andrews said.
State energy minister Lily D’Ambrosio used the occasion to call on Australia’s Prime Minister to match the state’s investment in energy storage.
“This investment is about using all the technology available to us to ensure the security and reliability of our energy supply, while creating jobs,” D’Ambrosio said.
“Given Malcolm Turnbull’s new found interest in energy storage initiatives and the fact that Victoria has so far received only 4 per cent of ARENA’s total national funding, we call on Mr Turnbull to match our state’s investment in energy storage.”
Expressions of interest for the second round of tenders are being sought by April 15 2017 and should be sent to [email protected]