June 15, 2024

Pacific Blue Australia begins $100M Grid-Scale Battery Construction

Pacific Blue Australia has commenced construction on a $100 million, 60 MW / 130 MWh grid-scale battery at Clements Gap in South Australia. This will be the company's first storage system and is scheduled to begin operations in 2026.

Pacific Blue Australia's First BESS at Clements Gap

Pacific Blue Australia, a renewable energy company owned by Chinese investors and formerly known as Pacific Hydro Australia, is constructing its inaugural battery energy storage system (BESS). The grid-scale BESS will have a capacity of 60 MW / 130 MWh and will be situated adjacent to Pacific Blue’s 56.7 MW wind farm in Clements Gap, South Australia. It will connect to an existing substation, thereby reducing the need for additional transmission infrastructure. The Clements Gap BESS represents Pacific Blue Australia's first venture into battery storage, with plans underway for a second BESS at their Haughton Solar Farm in Queensland.

Pacific Blue Australia CEO Domenic Capomolla highlighted that the completion of the Clements Gap BESS marks a significant achievement for the company, advancing its 2 GW pipeline of capacity and energy storage solutions. He emphasized that this initiative will support Australia's goal of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Trina Solar and SMA Will Provide 130 MWh Battery

China's Trina Solar and Germany's SMA Solar Technology are supplying 50 lithium-ion battery containers, providing 130 MWh. Pacific Blue Australia CEO Domenic Capomolla stated that battery energy storage systems are crucial for the state and for Australia's broader transition to renewable energy.

"Australia's energy transition has predominantly focused on renewable energy generation. The missing piece is storing that energy and deploying it to support grid stability, which is a crucial component of the country's renewable energy transition." He said.

Stored energy can be released to the grid during periods of peak demand to support grid stability and will also back SA’s target of net 100% renewables by 2027.

Pacific Blue's Renewable Portfolio

Pacific Blue operates nine wind farms, two hydro plants, and Stage 1 of the Haughton Solar Farm near Townsville, Queensland. Upon completion, this solar farm will generate up to 500 MW, enough to power 291,000 homes. Stage 2 will increase the total output by an additional 300 MW and will also feature a battery energy storage system (BESS). The project is directly connected to an existing 275 kV Powerlink transmission line.

Additional projects in development boast over 2.5 GW of potential capacity and energy storage solutions. Among these are the 100 MW Daroobalgie Solar Farm near Forbes, NSW, which can power 34,000 homes annually, and the 240 MW Prairie Solar Farm in Victoria’s Loddon Shire, capable of supplying energy to 120,000 homes. Pacific Blue Australia is owned by the State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) through its subsidiary, State Power Investment Overseas of China (SPIC Overseas). SPIC is one of China's five major power generation groups and the world's largest solar power generation enterprise.

Pacific Blue Australia's investment in the Clements Gap BESS marks a significant advancement in Australia's renewable energy landscape, supporting both local grid stability and broader sustainability goals.

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