Tasmania's competitive advantage

7 June 2018

Tasmania's Battery of the Nation plan is one of the most achievable and competitive solutions to Australia's looming energy challenge.

That's confirmed in the Future State analysis report released today.

The report concludes:

  • There’s a unique opportunity to use Tasmania’s existing hydropower system in a more interconnected national power system, to benefit both Tasmania and the national market.
  • Pumped hydro in Tasmania is extremely cost competitive. There’s plenty of opportunity, and most sites have an estimated cost of between $1.05m and $1.5m per megawatt to build.
  • Tasmania has a high-quality and diverse wind resource. It would generate electricity at different times to mainland wind farms, filling a vital gap in the future market.
  • As a whole, Battery of the Nation is cost-competitive against all other realistic options for meeting Australia’s future energy needs, including when the cost of more interconnection is taken into account.

The CEO of Hydro Tasmania, Steve Davy, said Australia is going to need huge-scale renewable development in coming years, to fill the gaps left as coal is phased out. Coal plants are expected to retire more rapidly in the late 2020s.

"Tasmania has a crucial role to play in that clean energy transition," Mr Davy said.

"In fact, the analysis confirms Tasmania is one of the most suitable, affordable and competitive options in Australia.

"Australia now has a clear, viable and competitive solution to invest in, for building the renewable storage and wind farms our nation needs.

“We'll need more interconnection to get Tasmania’s product to market. Even with the cost of more interconnection, the Future State analysis confirms Battery of the Nation is a national front-runner that’s extremely competitive and cost-effective," he said.

Hydro Tasmania continues to work closely with TasNetworks as it progresses Marinus Link, a project assessing the feasibility and business case for a second interconnector between Tasmania and mainland Australia. 

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has supported Battery of the Nation with funding of $2.5 million.

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said Tasmania’s vast pumped hydro and renewable energy reserves placed it in a great position to increase capacity to the NEM.

“As renewable energy grows to comprise a larger percentage of the nation’s electricity the importance of storage for reliability also increases. The Battery of the Nation has the potential to provide for the future needs of the NEM,” Mr Frischknecht said.

14 high-potential Tasmanian pumped hydro options were announced yesterday.

Battery of the Nation would lock in Tasmania’s energy security, and help give Tasmanians the lowest possible power prices.

Read the report to learn more:

Future State NEM analysis-Executive Summary
Future State NEM analysis-Full Report

Ends.

Released for Hydro Tasmania by Rowan Dix, (03) 62305330 / 0409 722359 / media@hydro.com.au.

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