The Project Assessment Conclusions Report (PACR) outlines how TransGrid would deliver the new 500 kV transmission project linking Wagga Wagga, Bannaby and Maragle in regional NSW.
Acting CEO Brian Salter said “TransGrid has today published the Project Assessment Conclusions Report, as the final part of the Australian Energy Regulator’s Regulatory Investment Test – Transmission consultation process.
“In the report, we have demonstrated how the HumeLink project will benefit energy customers and deliver $491 million in net benefits over the assessment period.
“When completed it will increase the amount of electricity that can be delivered to customers in NSW, the ACT and across the National Electricity Market,” Salter said.
HumeLink will also:
- reduce the need for new dispatchable generation investment to meet demand going forward;
- avoid capital costs that would otherwise be required associated with enabling greater integration of renewables in the National Electricity Market (NEM);
- lower the aggregate generator fuel costs required to meet demand in the NEM going forward;
- provide significant ‘competition benefits’ by increasing the efficiency of bidding in the wholesale market;
- help facilitate further reductions of carbon emissions to support achieving Australia’s climate change targets;
- create more than 1000 construction jobs; and
- contribute to regional economic activity generating major benefits for local communities along the route.
HumeLink, like all other major transmission projects, is subject to a market benefits test administered by the Australian Energy Regulator. TransGrid must show the AER that HumeLink will benefit consumers, to be given final regulatory approval.
“TransGrid’s report defines a preferred circuit option for HumeLink that delivers consumer benefit. However, it does not define a route,” Salter said.
“We are committed to consulting in a respectful, timely and effective with landowners and communities as the regulatory process progresses and we thank everyone for their patience as we await the regulator’s response to the report.”
If approved, HumeLink will go through a separate NSW Government environmental and planning approvals process and is expected to be delivered by late 2026.