The Western Australian Government has announced a consortium led by Enwave Australia to develop Australia’s first ever industrial renewable energy microgrid.

Lands Minister, Ben Wyatt, and Regional Development Minister, Alannah MacTiernan, announced that the new microgrid would be located at the Peel Business Park in Nambeelup, a strategically located industrial estate designed with a focus on agri-innovation and sustainability.

The microgrid will use a solar farm and battery storage, with electricity supplemented from the Western Power grid when required, to power the 120ha lot within the park.

The microgrid is an innovative solution to the high costs of extending the mains grid into the estate, and will speed up the development of industrial land and development opportunities for the Peel Business Park while delivering much-needed jobs to the region.

The microgrid will make it possible for 1,862 jobs to be created in the first 120ha lot, with a further 2,000 local jobs once the park is fully built out.

In addition, the microgrid will offer businesses looking to relocate into the park a saving of around 30 per cent off their yearly power bills.

Furthermore, to meet the increasing power needs of the Peel Business Park as it grows, the operator can lease roof space from businesses to install a network of solar panels that will feed additional energy into the microgrid.

The microgrid can also be increased in size and is expected to extend beyond LandCorp’s current landholding within the Peel Business Park, with potential uptake from interested neighbouring landowners.

Mr Wyatt said that the government’s vision for the Peel Business Park is a place where business, industry, training, research and development come together, invigorating the Peel region and creating jobs that cannot be achieved without providing a secure and affordable power supply.

“In planning the microgrid project, it has been estimated that the renewable energy mix will help reduce power usage costs to business by around 30 per cent off regulated bundled energy tariffs,” Mr Wyatt said.

“This is a smart, sustainable solution for a broader project that will be built on innovation.”

Before joining the Utility team, Eliza worked as a freelance journalist for a number of years. Eliza has the rare talent of being able to find the nuggets of gold in otherwise average source material, and like any self-respecting member of gen-Y is a whiz when it comes to social media marketing and management.

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