The ACT Government is holding a renewable energy auction to support the installation of battery storage in thousands of homes across the Territory.

ACT Minister for the Environment and Climate Change, Simon Corbell, recently announced the auction for 109MW of renewable energy feed-in tariff capacity, which will also complete the territory’s investment to meet its commitment of supplying 90 per cent of its electricity needs from renewable sources by 2020.

The auction will be open to proposals from both wind and solar generators.

These auctions help governments acquire renewable energy at a moderate cost, through competitive bidding.

With new technologies arising frequently, consideration will be given to expanding the definition of eligible generators, possibly expanding the types of technology able to be used in renewable projects.

“This auction will build on the success of previous auctions, but successful bidders will also provide an additional cash injection to establish a photovoltaic battery storage program in the ACT,” Mr Corbell said.

“We expect up to $25million to be available to support about 36MW of battery storage to be rolled out in more than 5,000 Canberra homes and businesses over the next four years. This will represent the largest deployment outside of Germany.

“PV-battery storage will revolutionise the renewable energy sector by storing renewable energy so it is on demand exactly when we need it, reducing the need for network investment.

“It means households can capture the maximum value of the energy they are producing and I am excited that the ACT is once again at the forefront of investment and innovation in this sector.”

In previous renewable energy auctions bidders have been required to provide significant local investments to the ACT, to build our economy through research, education and job growth.

So far this has resulted in more than $400million in local investment being secured for the ACT.

As part of this new auction process the government has included additional criteria that requires proponents to provide funding for the battery storage program.  

Proponents in this process will be required to make a financial contribution upon deed signing, financial close and a year after financial close to support ACT distributed storage projects.

The rollout of battery storage will build on the Next Generation Energy Storage Pilot, which opened in late 2015.

Storage capacity auctions will be held over the next four years to capture expected ongoing price reductions and technology improvements.

“It is exciting to see the 90 per cent renewable energy target on-track to be completed on time and with minimal flow-on cost for the Canberra community,” Mr Corbell said.

The cost to householders to achieve the ACT’s 90 per cent renewable energy target remains around $5 per household, per week, which is offset by government mandated energy efficiency programs.

The request for proposals closes on 13 May.

Jessica Dickers is an experienced journalist, editor and content creator who is currently the Editor of Utility’s sister publication, Infrastructure. With a strong writing background, Jessica has experience in journalism, editing, print production, content marketing, event program creation, PR and editorial management. Her favourite part of her role as editor is collaborating with the sector to put together the best industry-leading content for the audience.

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