New South Wales gets 34GW of solar, storage and wind proposals for latest REZ, more than 10 times final capacity

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Reddit
Email
The South-West REZ is to be located to the west of the city of Wagga Wagga and straddle the state’s border with Victoria. Image: Foresight Solar Fund.

The Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) has received proposals for more than 34GW of solar, wind and energy storage for its South-West Renewable Energy Zone (REZ), more than 10 times the likely capacity of the site.

NSW, through its recently formed Energy Corporation that will oversee the state’s REZs, held a registration of interest (ROI) in October and November 2021 for the South-West REZ, which is one of five planned zones in Australia.  

This article requires Premium SubscriptionBasic (FREE) Subscription

Unlock unlimited access for 12 whole months of distinctive global analysis

Photovoltaics International is now included.

  • Regular insight and analysis of the industry’s biggest developments
  • In-depth interviews with the industry’s leading figures
  • Unlimited digital access to the PV Tech Power journal catalogue
  • Unlimited digital access to the Photovoltaics International journal catalogue
  • Access to more than 1,000 technical papers
  • Discounts on Solar Media’s portfolio of events, in-person and virtual

Or continue reading this article for free

In total, 49 applications from renewables and storage developers made up the 34GWs of proposals, which was 13 times the intended capacity for the REZ, according to James Hay, Energy Corporation CEO, adding that the REZ will be no less than 2.5GW in capacity.

The South-West REZ is to be located to the west of the city of Wagga Wagga and straddle the state’s border with Victoria. Its location and design has been slightly amended since its original plan in 2018, now taking up more land and extending as far west as Buronga.

The location had been picked due to an “abundance of high-quality solar and other energy resources, proximity to project EnergyConnect, relative land-use compatibility and a strong pipeline of proposed projects,” the NSW government said.

REZs in Australia, and in particular in NSW, have proven phenomenally popular with solar developers looking to take advantage of the streamlined grid connection process and other purported benefits. The last REZ to formally open for generation bids attracted 34GW of proposals, equivalent to being more than four-times oversubscribed.

Conversely, while new research has revealed that solar PV and wind continue to be the cheapest new-build electricity generation options in Australia, even when considering their additional integration costs such as energy storage and transmission, Australian companies plan to spend AU$5.1 billion (US$3.7 billion) on offshore gas exploration over the next six years, enough to develop 2.5GW of renewables.  

In October, just before COP26, the Australian federal government committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2050 but did not pass any legislation to support such a transition in a move that was described as “disappointing” and “unambitious” by the country’s Clean Energy Council.

Analysts PV Tech spoke with at the time of the net zero announcement said many Australian states had far more ambitious climate goals than the federal government, with state governments being the main drivers of the energy transition.

Meanwhile, a leading Australian barrister and former head of the Law Council of Australia has said the federal government’s plans to invest public money into fossil fuel production could be illegal, is open to serious legal challenge and is “at odds” with the purpose of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA).

A feature article exploring the use of REZs in Australia and their use in attracting solar investment into the country was included within volume 27 of PV Tech Power and can be read in full here.

Read Next

June 20, 2024
European Energy is seeking Queensland government approval to pursue a 1.3GWp (1.1GWac) solar PV project in Australia.
June 19, 2024
The Queensland government confirmed that Caloundra, Australia, will house a Local Renewable Energy Zone to triple rooftop solar generation.
June 19, 2024
ARENA has launched its global AUS$100 million ‘Solar ScaleUp Challenge’ aiming to stimulate innovation and collaboration in the solar sector.
June 18, 2024
Pacific Partnerships has gained development rights for one of Australia’s largest solar PV projects, with 700MW of generation capacity.
June 17, 2024
Yindjibarndi Energy Corporation’s 150MW solar farm is the first project approved via Western Australia’s ‘Green Energy Approvals Initiative’.
June 17, 2024
Enel Green Power Australia confirmed its AU$190 million solar-plus-storage project in NSW, Australia, will commence construction in Q3 2024.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
July 2, 2024
Athens, Greece
Solar Media Events
July 9, 2024
Sands Expo and Convention Centre, Singapore
Solar Media Events
September 24, 2024
Warsaw, Poland
Solar Media Events
September 24, 2024
Singapore, Asia