Lightsource bp wins approval for 750 MW of solar, 3,000 MWh of storage in Australia


From pv magazine Australia

Australian Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek has announced the approval of the Sandy Creek Solar Farm and battery energy storage project, which Lightsource bp is developing in the heart of the New South Wales Central-West Orana Renewable Energy Zone (REZ).

Lightsource bp said the project will include a 750 MW solar farm coupled with an up to 750 MW/3,000 MWh battery energy storage system.

The Sandy Creek project, if constructed at that capacity, will surpass Acen's 720 MW New England Solar Farm under construction near Uralla, New South Wales. It will also be the biggest battery in the country, overshadowing the 1,200 MW/2,400 MWh Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub under development by Equis Australia in Victoria.

The Sandy Creek project is expected to generate up to 1.7 million MWh of electricity per year, equivalent to the power needs of approximately 200,000 homes.

The facility will connect to the national electricity grid via the proposed Elong Elong Energy Hub being developed by EnergyCo as part of the Central-West Orana REZ transmission project.

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“This is another big step in the government’s plan to make Australia a renewable energy superpower,” Plibersek said. “We know projects like this are vital to boosting renewables, but they are also great for local jobs and economies.”

Plibersek said the project will support up to 600 jobs during the construction phase and is one of 45 renewable energy projects she has ticked off with another 128 in the approvals pipeline.

“We want to unlock Australia’s potential to be a renewable energy superpower. It’s a huge task – we’re working overtime to get there,” she said.

Other projects in Lightsource bp’s development pipeline include the 520 MW Goulburn River and the 400 MW Gundary solar projects in New South Wales, as well as the 364 MW West Mokoan Solar Farm in Victoria.

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