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Australian news, and some related international items

RePower Port Augusta explain how Solar thermal power plant project could be economically viable

Solar thermal power plant project at Port Augusta ‘economically highly unviable’, http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-04-01/solar-thermal-project-at-port-augusta-hits-a-cost-barrier/6366388Alinta Energy says A group lobbying for a solar thermal power plant to be built at Port Augusta in South Australia says Alinta Energy may have overestimated the project’s cost.

The company’s latest report into the potential for a solar thermal power plant near the Upper Spencer Gulf city has found the project to be “economically highly unviable”.

Alinta owns the coal-fired Northern Power Station and the disused Playford Station but a study report found that a funding gap and falling electricity demand meant a conversion of the station to solar thermal was unlikely to happen.

But Lisa Lumsden, from the group RePower Port Augusta, said the finding was unsurprising given the uncertainty around the federal Renewable Energy Target (RET).

The Federal Government is yet to decide on the figure set for a national target on the amount of energy coming from renewable sources by 2020.”As we continue to have no decision and no action and certainty around the RET, the prospect of solar thermal happening in Port Augusta becomes less and less,” Ms Lumsden said.

There has been a strong push from the local community in recent years to convert the coal-fired station to renewable energy.Ms Lumsden said new technologies and plant configurations meant the project could actually be much less expensive than Alinta predicted.

“If they take that all into account over the next two or so months, and bring that information to the fore, we know that some of that will bring the costs down significantly, like more than half,” she said.”We know some of those technologies have the capacity to do that.”

Alinta Energy said that even under the most optimistic scenarios, it would fall short of the $570 million capital cost by about $150 million.

Ms Lumsden said the State Government should step in and fund the $150 million shortfall.

The company is continuing to investigate the project’s potential.

April 4, 2015 - Posted by | solar, South Australia

1 Comment »

  1. […] Read more here: RePower Port Augusta explain how Solar thermal power plant project could be economically viable « A…. […]

    Pingback by WORLD ORGANIC NEWS | RePower Port Augusta explain how Solar thermal power plant project could be economically viable « Antinuclear | April 5, 2015 | Reply


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