The largest integrated solar and battery storage facility in Australia, the Gannawarra Energy Storage System (GESS), is now exporting and importing electricity to the grid and is ready to support the national energy system as demand rises over summer.
This is the first time a utility-scale battery system has been retrofitted to an existing solar project, the Gannawarra 60 Megawatt (MW) Solar Farm, providing a new commercial model for other renewable and storage facilities in Australia.
GESS was selected by the Victorian Government under its Energy Storage Initiative to integrate a 25MW / 50MWh Tesla Powerpack battery with the 60MW DC Gannawarra Solar Farm.
The project was developed by a consortium comprising Edify Energy, Tesla, EnergyAustralia and was co-financed by WIRSOL Energy.
Edify Energy CEO, John Cole said the project is a real win for Victorian and Australian energy consumers in the enablement of a low-carbon energy future.
“The entire sector is aware of the potential for storage projects to not only provide invaluable services to the market and the grid but also to enable the rollout of more and more clean and cheap renewable energy,” Mr Cole said.
“Solar plus storage is a ‘category killer’. We are very proud to have developed, structured and overseen the construction of two projects that together can serve as a model for wider adoption of storage into the market and the realisation of a high renewable future. We intend to continue our rollout of storage and renewables projects and help our corporate and other customers achieve their energy and sustainability objectives,” he commented.
EnergyAustralia will operate the combined solar farm and battery facility in a coordinated way that best serves the Victorian energy market.
Financing for GESS was underpinned by a $25 million grant funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and the Victorian Government.
More information on the Gannawarra Energy Storage System can be found here.