Financial boost a milestone for Moorabool’s ‘big battery’

March 4, 2021 BY

Victoria's Big Battery storage facility located in Moorabool will be among the largest in the world. Photo: SUPPLIED

THE project to build the Southern Hemisphere’s largest battery has reached a funding milestone which provides a much-needed boost for the region’s economy and the state’s grid security.

Last year it was confirmed Victoria’s Big Battery will be built in Moorabool, putting it among the biggest storage facilities in the world.

As global leaders in renewable energy, Neoen in collaboration with Tesla and AusNet Services, will deliver the project with $160 million to be provided by Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) on behalf of the Australian Government.

The money invested by CEFC will go towards the design, construction and operation of the 300 MW battery that is predicted to drive down power prices across the state.

The project will not only provide stability for the state’s transmission network but will provide a well-timed boost to the region’s economy during the construction period.

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction, Angus Taylor, said the project would go a long way to support Victorians recovering from losses endured during the pandemic.

“All Australians need access to reliable and affordable power, which is why the Morrison Government is focused on keeping the grid secure,” he said.

“After the challenges of COVID-19, this is more important now than ever to support jobs, families and businesses in Victoria.

“We are working to ensure electricity prices do not hold Victorian industry back and this project is crucial to that objective.”

Construction has begun on the battery with the project anticipated to be delivered before summer 2021/2022. Australia’s managing director for Neoen, Louis de Sambucy said the news comes as an important “financial milestone”.

“I would like to thank the CEFC for their renewed trust and commitment towards supporting innovative storage solutions,” he said.

“With the help and hard work of our partners, Tesla and AusNet Services, we are looking forward to playing our part in helping Victoria reach its ambitious target of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030.”

CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth said the investment is a result of the federal government’s commitment to energy storage as a priority under the Technology Investment Roadmap.

“Energy storage supports cost effective, reliable, clean electricity and is a key component of Australia’s transition to a low emissions economy,” he said.

“This project is a world-class example of how utility scale batteries can help electricity networks support a higher penetration of renewable energy.”

Under the System Integrity Protection Scheme, the state’s ‘Big Battery’ will unlock an additional 250 MW of peak capacity on the existing Victoria to New South Wales Interconnector, a move anticipated to deliver more than $220 million to Victorian consumers during the next 11 years.

Neoen has estimated the project will create more than 80 jobs during construction and a total of six ongoing positions.