The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) said today it has provided AUD 16.5 million (USD 11.3m/EUR 10.1m) in funding to support the development of hybrid renewable energy systems with storage solutions at two mines in Western Australia.
Agnew Gold Mining Company Pty Ltd stands to receive AUD 13.5 million to develop a high penetration renewable energy microgrid at its gold mine in Western Australia's northern Goldfields. The scheme consists of a 10,000-panel solar farm totalling 4 MW, a 16-MW gas engine power station and diesel generation. These will be built in the first stage and commissioned in mid-2019. The second stage, which is already under construction, will incorporate an 18-MW wind farm with five turbines, a 13-MW/4-MWh battery and a microgrid system. The second stage is due to be completed in 2020.
Energy Developments Limited (EDL) has been entrusted with the design and construction of the microgrid. The distributed energy producer will also own and operate the system under a 10-year agreement with the Agnew gold mine parent company, Johannesburg-based Gold Fields Limited.
ARENA will also contribute AUD 3 million to a AUD-11.2-million microgrid hybrid project built by Port Gregory Wind Farm (PGWF) Pty Ltd near the town of Kalbarri, Western Australia. The project will involve a 2.5-MW wind farm, a 1-MW solar farm and a 2-MW/0.5-MWh lithium-ion battery. Perth-based developer Advanced Energy Resources (AER) will build, own and operate the site. In addition, AER has refurbished German decommissioned turbines which will be used to equip the wind farm.
Once finalised, the Port Gregory project will provide up to 70% of electricity to a nearby garnet mine operated by GMA Garnet Pty Ltd (GMA). Commissioning is due to take place in December 2019.
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