As my colleague recently noted, Australia’s biggest energy retailer, AGL, has been busier than the Seuz Canal this year – and today the company made yet another announcement as it seeks to distance itself from its reputation as Australia’s biggest climate polluter.
The energy giant will now be partnering with Finnish technology company Wärtsilä to develop systems for its commercial and industrial customers which integrate renewable behind-the-meter and off-grid technologies. The aim is to provide customers who have energy requirements above 20 MW with a broader range of options to improve energy efficiencies and supply.
In March, AGL acquired Epho and Solgen Energy Group. The merger propelled AGL to the position of Australia’s largest commercial solar provider in Australia. Its new partnership with Wärtsilä continues on from this presumably, extending the possibilities for C&I customers to not only generate green energy, but to solar shift.
The “innovative systems” to be established as part of the agreement with Wärtsilä will integrate solar, wind, battery storage and gas-firming technology. As Wärtsilä Energy’s President, Sushil Purohit, pointed out in a statement, intelligent energy management software and balancing engine power plants will also be necessary to support the integration of renewable energy sources into power systems in ways that maintain system flexibility, network stability and energy security.
“These systems will provide customers with certainty and peace of mind – knowing on low generation solar or wind days, flexible firming technologies are in place to meet their demands,” AGL’s Chief Operating Officer, Markus Brokhof, said.
Just last month, AGL announced it will partition itself into two energy businesses with separate strategies (one green, one brown) following intense pressure stemming from its poor environmental record and slumping fossil fuel assets. This announcement, which was met with little enthusiasm from the market, came off the back of news the company would retire Australia’s dirtiest coal power station, Loy Yang, early to replace it will a 200 MW big battery.
In January, AGL also secured Wärtsilä under a non-exclusive framework agreement to supply up to 1000 MW of grid-scale batteries across the NEM.
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