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Grids & Integration

Virtual power plant technology on trial in NSW schools

The New South Wales government has announced plans to use part of an estimated eight million square metres of public school roof space to install rooftop solar PV as it seeks to test the most effective ways to generate, store and export renewable energy into the state’s electricity grid.

New Zealand unveils multibillion-dollar climate plan, comes under attack for ‘staggering’ omission

New Zealand’s government this week unveiled its plan to cut emissions and fund the clean energy transition, featuring policies like a ‘scrap and replace’ scheme to incentivise electric vehicles and funding for electrifying industry. The NZ$2.9 billion (AU$2.6 billion) plan has received mixed reviews, with Greenpeace saying it has overlooked the country’s most glaring problem.

VPP pilot provides glimpse of future in DER-rich grid

Western Australia has been offered a glimpse of its energy future with the $35 million Project Symphony aggregating its first package of residentially generated energy and successfully participating in a simulated two-way Wholesale Electricity Market.

Weekend read: Australia’s looming solar cliff

Some believe Australia has begun to tip over the “solar cliff,” reaching penetrations that are becoming disruptive to the balance of the grid and to the business models of solar companies themselves. Following notable exits from the market, alarm bells are ringing for solar companies to offer more than just solar installations, writes pv magazine’s Bella Peacock.

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Victorian networks seek smart solutions to counter grid constraints

A trio of Victorian electricity distributors are turning to new, smarter technologies including more battery energy storage systems and demand management programs as they seek to meet changing customer needs and improve grid reliability in areas where the low-voltage distribution network is constrained.

Race for NSW renewable energy zone role trimmed to three

Three groups of companies remain in the race to serve as network operator for Australia’s first coordinated renewable energy zone with the New South Wales government revealing its shortlist of candidates.

WA town to be powered by pumped-hydro microgrid

The town of Walpole on Western Australia’s southernmost tip will soon be powered by a pumped-hydro microgrid, a first for the state which is already renowned for its rollout of microgrids and distributed renewable solutions.

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Weekend read: a trojan horse for decarbonisation

Australia’s most powerful energy industry participants have actively resisted the move to a low-carbon economy. Now, the country known as a sandbox for technology has become a sandbox for a new model for decarbonisation – one which has seen billionaires and giant fund managers sidestep politics to use the free market in strategic and potentially disruptive ways. pv magazine Australia’s Bella Peacock reports.

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First grid-scale ‘virtual battery’ contract signed between Neoen and AGL

French renewable developer Neoen has signed a seven year agreement with energy giant AGL to provide 70 MW / 140 MWh of ‘virtual battery capacity’ in New South Wales.

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Queensland coal trips boosting solar’s sunset revenue 

Increased demand and continual outages at gas and coal power plants in Queensland have seen a rise in the occurrence of extreme price spikes. The timing of these spikes, typically at peak hours between 5pm and 8pm, are seeing solar revenues soar just as the sun is setting.