New Wind, Solar, Energy Storage And Gas Power For Esperance

Esperance Power Project

Image via Horizon Power

The town of Esperance in Western Australia is to benefit from a from a major project that will deliver cleaner and greener electricity at a greatly reduced cost.

Esperance is situated on the south coast of Western Australia, approximately 715 kilometres south-east of Perth and is home to around 12,000.

Horizon Power announced last Thursday that Contract Power Australia (CPA) is to be awarded a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) for the supply of electricity to Esperance from 2022, extending for 20 years.

CPA will be constructing a 4MW solar energy facility and installing two 4.3MW wind turbines in the in the Shark Lake industrial area, along with a new gas-fired power station backed by battery storage.

The solar farm will be the largest in Horizon’s renewable energy portfolio and the two wind turbines will have boast more capacity than all the existing wind turbines at nearby Ten Mile Lagoon (2MW) and Nine Mile Beach (3.6MW) wind farms combined.

The renewable energy aspect of the project is expected to generate 46 per cent of the town’s electricity annually.

Construction of the various elements  is due to begin in September this year, with commissioning scheduled for the first quarter of 2022. Horizon has said it will be looking into the possibility of a future shared ownership model for the solar power facility with the community.

Slashing Electricity Generation Emissions – And Costs

Horizon states the new gas power station will slash carbon emissions by almost 50 per cent annually compared to the existing power supply arrangements. The battery energy storage system associated with the plant will improve its efficiency by responding to variabilities in transmission.

A statement from the WA Government notes overall the project will result in a reduction in the cost of supplying electricity to Esperance by an estimated 39 per cent.

“The agreement is in line with the McGowan Government’s Energy Transformation Strategy, which aims to deliver cleaner, greener energy to regional communities,” said WA Energy Minister Bill Johnston.

You can learn more about the Esperance Power Project here.

Horizon Power is a State Government-owned corporation supplying electricity to around 100,000 residents and 10,000 businesses in regional and remote Western Australia that are scattered across an area of approximately 2.3 million square kilometres.

Last year Horizon Power began taking some remote customers in the Esperance region off the grid by providing solar energy + storage systems along with backup generators, which will enable the utility to take down ageing powerlines that are costly to maintain and pose a fire hazard.

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

Comments

  1. Ole Due Jakobsen says

    great stuff, looking into new ideas as as solar towers to collect electricity.

    Have you any ideas about where to find a project?

    architect in Denmark,

    • Is it feasible for desalination plants ( apparently huge electricity guzzlers ) to be run on solar and wind? Seems a no brainer in these days if water shortages .

      • Ray McNamara says

        Rod, the amount of electricity needed depends on the desal plant size.If its the size of Wonthaggi – huge – then you could expect it to take 20% of the States power.
        If it is more small scale/local, then it may be more viable.But, it uses massive amounts of UV filtration. Those UV lamps (on a township scale plant) will still require quite large portions of the local power supply to produce a potable water.
        The secret to their success is the ability to produce the water at off-peak times and store it for use during the peak.

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