A plan for the construction of a 10-GW solar power complex with 30 GWh of energy storage capacity in Australia's Northern Territory, which will be able to export power to Singapore, has been granted a Major Project Status by the federal government.
This means that the AUD-22-billion (USD 15.7bn/EUR 13.4bn) Australian-ASEAN Power Link (AAPL) project of Sun Cable Pte Ltd will receive extra support from the Major Projects Facilitation Agency, including a single entry point for Commonwealth Government approvals, project support and coordination, and help with state and territory approvals, industry minister Karen Andrews and energy minister Angus Taylor said in a joint statement today.
In July 2019, the Northern Territory government also gave the scheme Major Project Status.
Sun Cable’s giant solar-plus-storage energy hub near Tennant Creek will be supplying green electricity to Darwin and from there to Singapore via a High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) cable. There are plans to also reach Indonesia. Once built, the facility will be one of the world’s largest dispatchable renewable electricity systems.
“This project is helping to grow a new industry, utilising intercontinental HVDC submarine transmission systems, to supply renewable electricity to major load centres in the Indo-Pacific and support the region's low-emissions goals,” said Sun Cable chief executive David Griffin.
Roughly AUD 8 billion of the AUD-22-billion investment is expected to be injected directly in Australia, Minister Andrews said. The complex’s construction is seen to create 1,500 jobs in Australia and generate AUD 2 billion work of exports annually.
Near the end of 2019, firms owned by billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes and his wife Annie, and mining magnate Andrew Forrest participated in an oversubscribed capital hike at project company Sun Cable. It secured proceeds in the tens of millions range for early development work for the project.
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