Going, going, gone: AGL completes shutdown of Liddell
Today marks a historic moment in Australia’s energy transition with AGL Energy completing the shutdown of its coal-fired Liddell power station in New South Wales with the last operating turbine having been switched off for the final time.
After almost 52 years in operation, Australia’s oldest coal-fired power plant has been retired from service with AGL confirming that the shutdown procedure at its Liddell power plant in the Upper Hunter region of New South Wales (NSW) has been completed with the final unit taken offline at about 10.30am today.
“The world is changing and so is AGL,” AGL Chief Executive Officer Damien Nicks said. “After providing the market with notice of closure more than seven years ago, Liddell has finally reached the end of its technical life and the time has now come to safely and respectfully retire the station and join the change to a cleaner future.”
AGL plans to convert the Liddell power station site into a renewable energy hub dominated by a 500 MW/2 GWh battery energy storage system as the gen-tailer manages its transition to a renewable energy dominated electricity market.
“Today marks the end of one chapter for the site, but also the beginning of another with our plans to transform the site into the Hunter Energy Hub,” Nicks said.
“We already have plans underway to build a 500 MW grid-scale battery on the site, a feasibility study into a hydrogen facility is underway, and we are also exploring options with potential partners in industries such as solar, wind, and waste-to-energy.”
The closure of the Liddell power station, which initially generated 2,000 MW but in recent years has been typically generating closer to 750 MW, has triggered some concerns about a potential shortfall in generation capacity.
Transgrid Executive General Manager of Network Marie Jordan was unconcerned about any supply crunch in the grid, saying the closure is another sign of Australia’s rapidly accelerating energy transition.
“We haven’t really seen any change in the network. We’re ready for it, it is planned for and the network is operating fine,” she said. “We’re ready to take on 100% renewables.”
AGL Chief Operating Officer Markus Brokhof said attention will now switch to the demolition of the Liddell station with the emphasis on recycling and reusing materials.
“The demolition process is estimated to commence in early 2024 and take around two years to complete,” he said. “More than 90% of the materials in the power station will be recycled, including 70,000 tonnes of steel.”
“Critical infrastructure, such as transmission connections to the grid, will be retained as the site transitions into the Hunter Energy Hub.”
- ^ Posts by David Carroll (www.pv-magazine-australia.com)
- ^ 500 MW/2 GWh battery (www.pv-magazine-australia.com)
- ^ https://t.co/5yzyB2aLgO (t.co)
- ^ pic.twitter.com/ez4N0Kr9Ys (t.co)
- ^ April 28, 2023 (twitter.com)
- ^ generating closer to 750 MW (wattclarity.com.au)
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