NSW wants to put a battery on an old landfill site to replace shuttered gas plant
The New South Wales government wants to turn the old Belrose landfill site into a home for a battery energy storage system (BESS), sized up to 14.2 MVA / 14.2 MW.
It’s not the first time the government has offered up crown land for renewable energy projects, following a series of other entities looking for clean energy projects to set up on their landholdings.
The government’s Waste Asset Management Corporate (WAMC) wants to lease the land, and potentially share revenue, with a battery operator who will develop, own and operate a BESS that makes use of existing power infrastructure on the site.
A methane gas generator operated by EDL was decommissioned in 2022 – today the remnant methane is still captured, but flared into the atmosphere – but a 33kV transmission line is still connected to the site.
That feeder line means the site has a maximum 14.2 megavolt amp (MVA) charging and export capacity, Ausgrid says.
WAMC wants to use any income from a battery to offset the cost of gas flaring, as well as pay for site rehabilitation.
It wants bids from proponents with experience building and operating batteries larger than 5 MW in the National Energy Market (NEM).
NSW departments keen on sharing with renewables
The WAMC tender is the latest in NSW for a government entity to offer up a site for renewables.
The government did a deal with the current landholder to switch the land from grazing to energy infrastructure. It is inside the south-west renewable energy zone and is near two solar projects, Limondale and Sunraysia.
RenewEconomy is seeking comment from the Department of Environment as to whether anything came of this tender.
In March 2022, the NSW Forestry Corporation put up its timber plantations near Oberon, Sunny Corner, Bondo, Orange, and Laurel Hill as potential sites for renewables projects, with wind farms being the most likely option.
At the time Forestry Corporation CEO Anshul Chaudhary said they’d received “a number of unsolicited proposals for a range of renewable technologies”, so were starting a formal process.
And in 2020 Water NSW asked for EOIs for using the Windamere and Burrendong Dam for renewable energy and storage projects.
It signed a deal with ACEN Australia to build a 810 MW pumped hydro system next to Lake Burrendong, and had a shortlist it was planning to award this year. the Phoenix Pumped Hydro Project, located 35km west of Mudgee, was awarded $7 million by the Perrottet Coalition government to progress feasibility studies late last year.
Rachel Williamson is a science and business journalist, who focuses on climate change-related health and environmental issues.