Australia’s first grid-scale battery storage facility will be built in Victoria, with the state government calling for expressions of interest for its construction.

The new 20MW battery will be constructed in the north-west or south-west of Victoria, where the energy market operator has identified opportunities to improve grid reliability.

Storage plays a vital role in better integrating renewable energy generation, it will ensure reliability of supply and keep power prices in check, especially in peak demand periods.

This initiative follows a recent Victorian Government announcement of $5 million for large-scale battery storage, which will enhance the performance and security of the grid.

The announcement will feed into a large scale storage and flexible capacity expression of interest process being undertaken by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC).

ARENA has now agreed that the project chosen as part of the state government’s initiative will receive agency funding if it meets the selection criteria.

Victorian Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio, said, “We are in the midst of a major global transformation and we’re making sure Victoria is equipped with the next generation of energy technologies that will support a resilient energy system.

“The 20MW battery will be the first of its kind for Australia, it will help to modernise Victoria’s electricity grid, enhance energy security and deliver affordable energy.

“We’re taking the action required to ensure reliable and affordable energy supply for Victorians while we deliver on our renewable energy targets.”

Expressions of interest from utility-scale battery storage businesses are being sought by 1 March 2017, and are to be provided to the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).

The Victorian Government and ARENA will continue to work with AEMO and network businesses to finalise a tender that will be issued publicly in April 2017.

Lauren brings a fresh approach to content. While she’s previously written for publications as diverse as Australian Geographic, The Border Watch and Girlfriend, she’s found her true passion in her current role as an editor in the world of energy and infrastructure trade magazines.

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