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128.5 MW solar hybrid plant reaches financial close in South Australia

Vena Energy Australia has reached financial close on the second stage of its Tailem Bend 2 Hybrid Project thanks to a PPA with Zen Energy and green financial support from DBS, ING, and Siemens. The 128.5 MW project will comprise 87 MW of solar with 41.5 MW of battery energy storage.

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Rio Tinto’s flashy new mine powered by 34 MW of solar 

Resources giant Rio Tinto has officially opened what it is calling its most technologically advanced mine in the Pilbara region of Western Australia. The Gudai-Darri iron ore mine features a 34 MW solar farm capable of meeting one-third of the facility’s energy needs.

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Melbourne’s suburbs shining with solar and battery uptake

After a bumpy start, the Victorian government’s Solar Homes Program is now in full swing, lead by strong uptake in Melbourne’s suburbs and the state’s rural north. Meanwhile, demand for batteries linked to rooftop solar has skyrocketed over the last month, spurred by the energy crisis and an especially cold winter.

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AGL looking to turn its Torrens Island facility into a green hydrogen hub

Australian energy giant AGL Energy has announced its leadership of a consortium of industry partners for a feasibility study into whether its Torrens Island facility can become a green hydrogen hub for domestic users and export.

Western Australia to exit coal by 2029 in response to competition from solar

Western Australia is set to exit coal-fired power by the end of the decade as state-owned power provider Synergy will close its two remaining coal plants by 2029 in response. Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan said coal was no longer viable due to the high-penetration of solar, particularly rooftop. McGowan also announced a $662 million boost for the coal-town of Collie’s industrial transition and $3.8 billion in statewide renewable investment, with a focus on energy storage.

A simmering cauldron of renewables ‘revenue cannibalisation’

There is enormous demand for renewables to enter the grid, and for power purchase agreements to make use of them. However, as more renewables feed into the grid at intermittent periods, the risk of “revenue cannibalisation” increases. Swiss consultancy Pexapark’s latest report looks at the “cannibalisation effect” and how the solar PPA market can adapt.

Wine not? Treasury Wine Estates set to install 9,500 solar panels

Penfolds owner Treasure Wine Estates will install more than 9,500 solar panels across its Barossa and Karadoc wineries as the company seeks to become 100% renewable by 2024. To achieve that goal the company says it is preparing to install 29,000 solar panels across its vineyards worldwide, while also purchasing offsite renewables.

Enphase claims new safety regulations mean more Aussie installers prefer its IQ Microinverters

Long-overdue safety and compliance regulation increases came into effect in May. US-based Enphase Energy claims its technology’s exemption from much of nation-wide regulations means installers across the country are opting for its products exclusively.

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Melbourne homeowner in ‘heritage overlay’ ordered to remove rooftop solar panels

Melbourne’s City of Boroondara council has ordered a homeowner to remove rooftop solar panels on a street-facing facade due to the building’s position in a heritage overlay. In 2021 the City of Boroondara declared a climate emergency and called for a tripling of rooftop solar in the municipality. The homeowner described the decision as “ridiculous.”

Interview: Maxeon’s Mark Babcock talks sustainability, traceability, and what makes the Australian market so exciting

Singapore-headquartered solar manufacturer Maxeon Solar Technologies, which sells in Australia under the SunPower Maxeon brand, announced in May that it was launching its new holistic energy management system in Australia in the third quarter of 2022. pv magazine Australia sat down with Maxeon Solar Technologies’ chief revenue officer Mark Babcock in Munich, Germany, at Intersolar 2022.

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