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Media Release: Better Futures Forum - We can secure 24-hour renewable energy AND stop price spikes

Tuesday 6 September 2022

Tuesday at the Better Futures Forum at UNSW Canberra

We can secure 24-hour renewable energy AND stop price spikes  

Campaign calls for a national target and policy settings to ensure that Australia can secure 18 GW of renewable energy storage across the country and achieve 82% of energy supply from renewables by 2030. 

Today, we have 3.4GW of storage capacity available in the energy grid. There’s a massive 47GW of storage proposed by utilities across the country. If we could fast track the proposed storage, then we can secure 24-hour renewable energy AND stop price spikes.  

Ensuring there’s a vision and strategy in place to support ongoing investment in energy storage will be essential for success. Renewables industry body the Smart Energy Council has joined forces with Better Futures Australia, an alliance of business and community leaders representing more than 7 million Australians, to call for much needed strategic investment in renewable energy storage. 

“Renewable energy storage is the key to 24-hour power in the 21st Century,” said John Grimes, Chief Executive of the Smart Energy Council. 

“Whether it’s a home solar battery or a battery on wheels via an electric vehicle, a Big Battery project or pumped hydro, renewable energy storage will be the lifeblood of the energy grid of the future, delivering energy security and lower power bills. 

“Australia is in the middle of the fastest energy transition we have ever seen, with at least five coal generators closing by the end of the decade. We can’t afford to waste time if we are to manage our way through intermittent energy crises over the next few years.”

“We need to get serious about energy storage and act now. That means a Federal Renewable Energy Storage Target and a range of other mechanisms to encourage investment in zero emissions storage.” 

“The Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility must prioritise renewable energy storage and the Commonwealth government must begin work today to really unleash renewable energy storage. 

The Unleashing Renewable Energy Storage Campaign will be launched at the Better Futures Forum at UNSW Canberra today. Speakers include: 

  • Andrew Barr, ACT Chief Minister – Keynote and panel 
  • John Grimes, Chief Executive, Smart Energy Council 
  • Lara Panjkov, Fluence Energy 
  • Ric Brazzale, Green Energy Markets 
  • Francis Wedin, Vulcan Energy Resources 
  • Luke Osborne, Stride Renewables. 

Full program at 

Media contacts: 

Niall Byrne, [email protected], 0417-131-977
Jane Watkins, [email protected], 0425-803-204.

Background information: examples of battery technology in Australia 

SA Big Battery – Hornsdale Power Reserve, South Australia 

  • Australia’s first big battery, been operating for almost five years. 
  • 100MW/129MWh construction was completed on December 1st, 2017.  
  • The 50MW/64.5MWh expansion was completed in the first half of 2020. 
  • Built in under 100 days after SA state-wide power outage in 2016. 

More info: FAQ's | Hornsdale Power Reserve 

Victorian Big Battery, Geelong 

  • 300 MW grid-scale battery storage project in Geelong, Victoria installed to help the state meet its renewable energy target of 50% by 2030. 
  • Designed to store enough energy in reserve to power over one million Victorian homes for 1/2 an hour. 
  • The 300 MW / 450 MWh battery consists of 210 Tesla Megapacks covering an area smaller than the football oval at Geelong’s GMHBA Stadium. 

More info: 

Battery Warrenheip, Victoria 

  • The 30MW / 30MWh Ballarat Energy Storage System (BESS) comprising a Fluence battery is located at the AusNet Services Ballarat Terminal Station in Warrenheip, Ballarat.   
  • It’s registered in all eight ancillary services markets, helping to provide grid stability to the network. This means that each of those markets can bid to access the battery’s supply when needed. 
  • The Ballarat Energy Storage System operates 24/7 and is capable of powering more than 20,000 homes for an hour of critical peak demand before being recharged.  
  • Commenced operations in December 2018. 

More info: Ballarat Battery Storage | EnergyAustralia 

Giga Scale Battery Manufacturin, Tomago NSW (Hunter region) 

  • Australian battery manufacturer Energy Renaissance recently completed a $1.47 million pilot program to develop and test its manufacturing processes, systems and plant design of lithium-ion batteries. 
  • It has built a new $28 million purpose-built facility in the New South Wales Hunter region to ramp up production of its superStorage series of batteries for domestic and international markets. 
  • Energy Renaissance is currently producing up to 4 MWh of lithium-ion batteries per month for use in industrial and commercial applications but that will scale up significantly when operations are transferred. 
  • Its initial battery production capacity is up to 300 MWh per annum, with plans to scale the operation up to 5.3 GWh. 
  • The unique hot climate battery management system is also designed to be cyber secure, so they are attractive to defence clients as well as for agriculture and other industries that are looking beyond diesel. 

More info:

Energy Renaissance moves ahead with battery giga-factory – pv magazine Australia ( 

Hazelwood Battery, Victoria  

  • The Hazelwood Battery Energy Storage System (HBESS) is a 150MW/150MWh utility-scale battery 
  • Designed to deliver electricity grid stability for Victoria.  
  • Capacity to store an hour of energy generation from the rooftop solar systems of 30,000 Victorian homes supporting the energy system’s stability.’ 
  • Situated at the rehabilitated former Hazelwood Power Station in the Latrobe Valley, replacing coal with solar, wind and batteries. 
  • Scheduled to be operational by November 2022 

More info: 

Broken Hill Battery Energy Storage System, NSW 

  • AGL is building and operating a battery energy storage system (BESS) of approximately 50 megawatts (MW) and up to 100 megawatt-hour (MWh) in capacity at Broken Hill NSW. 
  • BESS will be connected to the nearby Transgrid Broken Hill substation via a 22 kV overhead powerline connecting through a 22 kV busbar at the substation to manage current distribution. 
  • Battery designed to support the electricity grid in times of high demand.

More info: 

Wandoan South Battery Energy Storage System (BESS), Darling Downs, Queensland 

  • At end of August 2022 commenced full commercial operations after a successful 18-month testing and commissioning phase. 
  • capacity of 100 MW and can store up to 150 MWh of energy – equivalent to powering approximately 57,000 average-sized Australian households annually. 
  • Located on the Darling Downs, 400km north west of Brisbane 
  • Dispatch rights for Wandoan South battery have been handed over to AGL by Singapore-based developer Vena Energy which built the system.

More info: Wandoan South BESS – Vena Energy 

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