Coober Pedy renewable hybrid project achieves 24 hour 100% renewables milestone

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Drone’s view of the completed Senvion wind turbines at Coober Pedy

Energy Developments is pleased to announce the South Australian town of Coober Pedy has been successfully powered entirely off 100% renewable energy for more than 24 hours uninterrupted for the first time since its hybrid solar, wind and battery project began operations.EDL CEO, James Harman said: “Since commissioning on 1 July, we’ve been very pleased with the performance of the Renewable Hybrid project in Coober Pedy. The system is performing in line with our expectations, delivering an increasing amount of zero emissions electricity to the residents and businesses of Coober Pedy. Diesel savings expected over the 20 year life of the project are expected to be 70% on average.”

 

“On 20/21 September the hybrid project achieved a significant milestone through supplying 100% renewables to the town of Coober Pedy for a continuous period of more than 24 hours.

In total, the town was powered by 100% renewables for an uninterrupted 35 hours. As the sole source of power for the town which is remote from the grid we consider this a tremendous achievement in the early stages of the project’s life.”

Mr Harman said that in addition to today’s milestone the system had already generated impressive reductions in diesel consumption for generating electricity:

  • Total diesel consumption reduced by 381,000 litres since commencement of operations in July
  • 61% diesel saving in August
  • 72% diesel saving 1- 21 September

“Since the start of September, the system has spent more than 174 hours or 35% of the time in Zero Diesel Operation (ZDO) which meant Coober Pedy was running on 100% renewable energy. Over time we expect that to increase even more.

“We are anticipating system performance to further improve as it is fine-tuned and our modelling anticipates ZDO operation for more than 50% of the time as the performance of this technically complex project is optimised.

Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said today, ““The State Government welcomes the successful commissioning of the Hybrid Renewable power station in Coober Pedy by EDL and the world-leading level of renewable penetration already achieved”.

“The power station will provide safe, reliable and clean energy to support the Coober Pedy community and once again puts the town at the forefront of the renewable energy industry.”

 

Mr Harman said Energy Developments would continue to optimise the system to deliver further ZDO uptime and reductions in diesel consumption. This project is expected to set global benchmarks for renewable penetration in off grid Mega Watt scale generation while maintaining reliability at a level the same or better than the diesel power station that EDL has been operating since 2004.

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Solar array at the EDL Renewable Hybrid Project at Coober Pedy

 

  • The Renewable Hybrid Project involves a hybrid combination of 4 MW wind, 1 MW solar, and a 1 MW/500kWh battery with the support of various enabling technologies to integrate the renewable and diesel generators to provide Coober Pedy with at least 70% renewable energy over the 20 year life of the Project.
  • The project received funding support from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), which agreed to provide funding up to $18.4M for the development and construction of the project.

Eddie Hughes MP, Member for Giles said, “The EDL project has really proven itself when it comes to renewable electricity production.”

“To reach 100% renewable for at least this part of its operation is a real milestone and a credit to the people who have worked on the project.”

“Contrary to some, it’s a very positive project for Coober Pedy and is a project that helps others to see Coober Pedy in a positive light,” he said.

“Renewables are going to form a very strong part of our future when it comes to electricity production.”

“We are very fortunate to live in a state that has got world class solar and wind resources,” he said.

“The missing link has been storage and responsive backup, and that missing link is being built in SA with battery projects and studies into into pumped hydro plus traditional gas fired power stations”, concluded Mr. Hughes.

Rowan Ramsey Federal Member for Grey said, “It’s very encouraging that the project is operating on 100% renewable energy over 24 hours”.

“If renewables don’t work in Coober Pedy off the grid, then it’s not going to cut the mustard anywhere.”

“Over the longer period we’ll want to make sure that it puts downward pressure on the prices of electricity for the people who live in Coober Pedy.”

Coober Pedy

Coober Pedy’s power station owned and operated by Energy Developments

 

Energy Developments Pty Limited (EDL) is an international provider of safe, clean, low greenhouse gas emissions energy, remote energy solutions and renewables.

EDL owns and operates a portfolio of 983 megawatts (MW) of power generation facilities in Australia, North America and Europe, in four sectors comprising remote energy, landfill gas to energy, waste coal mine gas to energy and renewable energy. The company is a market leader in its sectors, providing safe, innovative and reliable energy solutions for our customers for over 25 years.