Solar+wind+storage project waved through in Western Australia


A major hybrid renewable energy project in Western Australia has secured all necessary approvals from the state and federal authorities, renewables developer Lacour Energy has confirmed.

The latest milestone achieved was the federal government approval under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act. The next step will be to secure finance for the renewables hub, which comes with a price tag of $250 million.

The project located near the town of Kondinin comprises 120 MW of wind and 50 MW of solar PV, and a battery storage system, the size of which has not been specified. It is expected to generate electricity for over 100,000 local homes each year, covering about 3% of Western Australia’s demand.

“The Kondinin project location ticks all the boxes to be one of the lowest cost projects in Western Australia,” Lacour director Mark Rayner said in a statement.

“There is a strong wind resource located on the Western Power network with plenty of ability to connect the project via an existing substation.”

According to Rayner, the final feasibility study will determine the financial model for the project, with financial close expected around the middle of the year.

Lacour Energy is also developing a 1 GW-plus hybrid project in Queensland. The renewables hub will feature 800 MW wind farm, which was ready to break ground last month, collocated with up to 400 MW of solar and a battery energy storage facility.

Just like in case of the Queensland hybrid project, Lacour’s partner on the WA project is Chinese wind specialist Goldwind, which will supply up to 46 wind turbines to the project and manage construction works.

Goldwind Australia managing director John Titchen said Goldwind is pleased to see that the Western Power network is now becoming more accessible.

The Konidin Wind and Solar Farm is predicted to generate on average around 500 GWh of electricity every year. The construction period for the entire project will be around 18-24 months.

Menwhile, other Australian hybrid projects are being developed by: CWP Renewables, Genex PowerWindlab, and Neoen.

Energy Estate and MirusWind have put forward a 4 GW renewable energy hub for New South Wales, while a consortium comprising Vestas, Intercontinental Energy, CWP Energy Asia and Macquarie Group has proposed Australia’s biggest hybrid project – the 11 GW Asian Renewable Energy Hub , which is planned to export power to Southeast Asia via subsea cables and supply big miners and green hydrogen projects in the Pilbara region, in northwest WA.

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