Construction will get underway this year on a 250-megawatt (MW), one-hour duration grid-scale battery at Torrens Island, following AGL’s final investment decision (FID) on the project.
AGL Torrens, located approximately 18 kilometres from Adelaide CBD on Torrens Island, is the largest power station in South Australia and the largest natural gas-fired power station in Australia.
With a nameplate capacity total of 1,280 MW, the thermal power station burns natural gas in boilers to generate steam, which then drives the turbines to generate electricity. It produces enough power to meet the annual needs of approximately 470,000 average Australian homes.
In November 2020, AGL announced plans to develop a grid-scale battery in South Australia, as part of plans to roll out 850 MW of energy storage capacity across the National Energy Market (NEM) by the end of the 2024 financial year.
Today AGL’s Managing Director and CEO, Brett Redman, said that they are excited to be giving the green light to the Torrens grid-scale battery, the first one in the AGL network that is under development.
“We put forward our vision for this project less than six months ago and with the hard work of our team and support from the South Australian government we are now ready to make this a reality,” Mr Redman said.
AGL’s Chief Operating Officer, Markus Brokhof, said battery technology is key to enhancing the energy system’s flexibility while leading Australia’s energy transition and ongoing integration of renewables.
“It is through low emission firming technology, like batteries, that we are continuing to drive AGL’s energy transition and respond to the accelerating market forces of customer demand, community expectation and the development of technology,” Mr Brokhof said.
“Our battery program will also support us in achieving the goals and targets set out in our Climate Statement, which includes our target of net zero emissions by 2050 – a target we share with the South Australian Government.”
Earlier this year, AGL entered into framework agreements with global energy storage technology companies, Wartsila and Fluence, and is currently finalising the provider arrangements for this project in order to begin construction.
AGL is targeting full operation of the system by early 2023. The battery has been planned to be capable of an expansion of up to four-hours in duration, enabling AGL to adapt to changing market conditions.
AGL closed two units at the Torrens Island power station in September 2020, the third will be closed in September 2021, and the final unit will be closed in September 2022.
In addition to this project, AGL is also developing a 200MW battery at its Loy Yang A power station, a 150MW battery at its Liddell power station and a 50MW battery in Broken Hill as well as supporting grid-scale battery projects including Wandoan, Maoneng and Dalrymple.