Genex Power recently announced that it has secured AUD 660 million ($508.7 million) in external financing for the 250 MW/2 GWh pumped hydroelectric energy storage (PHES) facility to be built alongside the existing 50 MW Kidston solar farm in Queensland, Australia. It secured AUD 610 million debt facility from the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) and a AUD 47 million project grant funding agreement from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). It has also secured AU$147 million committed by the state government of Queensland for the building of transmission infrastructure. The entire project — including the transmission network buildout — is expected to cost around AU$777 million. So receiving the funding from these various entities makes the projects almost fully funded.
The PHES facility, which will be built at the site of the abandoned Kidston gold mine, is part of the Kidston Clean Energy Hub, which includes the already operational 50 MW solar farm. Genex has declared there is also potential for further multi-stage wind and solar projects.
The 250 MW PHES facility was initially scheduled to reach financial close in 2019 but has struck some roadblocks but is now on track to become the first pumped hydro plant to be built in Australia in almost 40 years, and the first to be used specifically to support the integration of variable renewable energy generation from solar and wind. In March 2019, EnergyAustralia, a unit of Hong Kong’s CLP Holdings and Australia’s third-largest energy retailer, signed an agreement to buy power from the project. The project is part of more than 400 MW of renewable energy and storage projects Genex has in development.
Link to the news: https://www.energy-storage.news/news/2gwh-pumped-hydro-storage-plant-in-australia-achieves-financial-close-proje