Iberdrola Commissions World's First Wind-Solar Hybrid Plant in Australia
Iberdrola unveils the first wind-solar hybrid project in the world, Port Augusta. This renewable energy facility in South Australia uses 210 MW of wind power and 107 MW of photovoltaic power. It costs A$500 million to build.
The complex is the largest wind-solar farm in the southern hemisphere. It has 50 wind turbines and 250,000 solar panels. The plant will stop 400,000 tonnes of CO2 from going into the atmosphere every year and produce enough clean energy to meet the needs of 180,000 Australian households.
With the installation of the photovoltaic modules, the project is now in the full generation phase. This is in addition to the wind power part of the installation, which started sending energy to the grid for the first time in April.
The project, which has generated 200 jobs during its construction, has involved local, global, and Spanish suppliers. Specifically, the Spanish company Elecnor built the plant's substation, transmission line, storage areas, and access roads. Vestas has manufactured and installed the 50 wind turbines of 4.2 MW unit capacity in the wind farm; Longi has supplied the solar panels for the photovoltaic plant, and Sterling&Wilson has been in charge of its construction.
South Australia wants to get 100% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030, and opening Port Augusta will be a big step toward that goal. In addition to facilitating decarbonisation, the plant will help reduce consumer electricity prices and advance energy self-sufficiency. To generate the same amount of power as Port Augusta will produce with a traditional combined cycle would require around 155 million cubic metres of gas per year.
Iberdrola has made a strong commitment to the Australian energy market. The company plans to make a major investment of up to 3 billion euros in the country, to reach 4,000 MW of renewable energy in the coming years.
Iberdrola has already put more than A$1 billion (about €700 million) into new renewable growth projects like the Avonlie solar farm in southwestern New South Wales and the Flyers Creek wind farm in central New South Wales.
The company also acquired the rights to the world's largest wind farm at Mount James, with 1,000 MW, the 360 MW Broadsound photovoltaic power station in Queensland, and has invested in a smart solutions business, Autonomous Energy, which offers tailored energy products for commercial and industrial companies.
With these investments, Iberdrola has a mature portfolio of more than 2,000 MW in development projects that will help make renewable energies the main driver of the energy transition in the country.
The electricity market in Australia is undergoing a profound transformation from a centralised generation system based on large fossil fuel facilities (coal and gas) to a system of distributed generation, primarily wind and solar power.
The Iberdrola group was a pioneer in its commitment to a sustainable growth strategy based on promoting the electrification of the economy through investment in renewable energies, electricity grids, and energy storage. Due to this vision, the company is now a world leader in renewable energies, with close to 39,000 MW of renewable capacity installed around the world. It is also a leader in the move toward a low-emissions economy and energy independence.