Market Herald logo

Subscribe

Be the first with the news that moves the market
  • Origin Energy (ORG) plans to build Australia’s largest battery
  • The project will put new life into a location currently housing an ageing coal plant
  • The 700-megawatt battery will stand south of Newcastle in New South Wales
  • Origin plans to transition away from coal-powered energy by 2032
  • Permits sought to begin construction are currently underway, with the three-step phase to execute the project to begin late next year
  • Shares in Origin Energy opened flat on Wednesday at $5.01

Origin Energy (ORG) has unveiled plans to build Australia’s largest battery, putting an aging coal plant to new use.

The 700-megawatt battery will be placed south of Newcastle in New South Wales.

Transitioning the coal plant is part of the company’s larger goal of phasing out coal use by 2032.

“We recognise we have an important role to play in positioning Origin’s electricity generation portfolio to support Australia’s rapid transition to renewables,” Origin Executive Manager, Greg Jarvis, said on Tuesday.

If successful, not only would it be Australia’s largest battery, it will also be four times larger than Elon Musk’s Tesla battery in South Australia.

“The deployment of this battery at Eraring will support Origin’s orderly transition away from coal-fired generation by 2032, while complementing the policy objectives of the NSW energy road map,” Jarvis also said.

Recently, the New South Wales Government unveiled a roadmap for renewable energy use throughout the state. The government is planning to procure $32 billion in private investments through green projects such as Origin’s.

But despite NSW’s roadmap, the federal government made earlier plans in September for a $500 million gas power plant in the state’s town of Kurri Kurri.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says companies invested in green energy have until April to prove they can offset the country’s reliance on coal-fired energy.

“The Commonwealth government would prefer not to step in. That is not our Plan A. But nor will we shy away from taking action to protect consumers and support jobs, including here in this region and so many like it,” Morrison said last year.

Origin is not the only company looking to hoist up more batteries in Australia.

French company Neoen submitted planning documents last month for a 500-megawatt battery also in New South Wales.

Neoen had previously partnered with Tesla to build the South Australian 150-megawatt battery. The company also announced in November it has plans to build a 300-megawatt battery in Victoria.

Origin has officially lodged its interest to build the battery with the New South Wales transmission network TransGrid. The company has also been in contact with several private companies over construction deals to build the project.

Plans show the battery will have long-term storage capacities, making it available for use when other sources of energy fail.

Construction of the battery will occur over a three-phase plan — with phase one to begin late next year.

Currently, Origin will work to acquire permits, establish a network connection, and obtain board approval.

Shares in Origin Energy opened flat on Wednesday at $5.01 at 10:28 am AEDT.

ORG by the numbers
More From The Market Herald

" Appen (ASX:APX) positioned to weather pandemic, reaffirms guidance

Data annotation and artificial intelligence company Appen (ASX:APX) has today reaffirmed its guidance for the 2020…

" Appen (ASX:APX) beats earnings guidance, outperforms a weak market

Data annotation and artificial intelligence specialist Appen (APX) has soared today after beating its earnings guidance…
Appen (ASX:APX) - CEO, Mark Brayan

" Appen’s (ASX:APX) shares rise on business restructure

Machine intelligence company Appen (ASX:APX) has made some changes to the structure of its business.
The Market Herald Video

" Appen (ASX:APX) receives $1.17b takeover bid from Canadian tech giant

Appen (ASX:APX) has received an unsolicited $1.17 billion takeover bid from Canadian telco giant Telus International.