Tag Archives: Coal-fired power plant

Australia’s largest battery to be built at an aging NSW coal-fired power plant | Instant News


The energy provider’s plan to build Australia’s largest battery is the latest development in a rapidly transitioning energy market.

Origin Energy has announced plans to build a giant 700 megawatt battery at a coal-fired power plant in Eraring, south of Newcastle, in the Hunter region of New South Wales.

If the plan goes, the battery will be four times the size of the 150 megawatt Tesla battery in South Australia.

Origin executive general manager, Greg Jarvis, said the batteries would support Origin’s transition from coal-fired power generation by 2032.

The batteries will use the existing factory infrastructure

Origin released a statement of interest to private companies this week to build and install batteries at the Eraring plant and has started talking with network company Transgrid about connecting the batteries to the national network via the Eraring substation.

The Eraring power station – which is Australia’s largest power station – is Origin’s only coal-fired plant. It is scheduled to be decommissioned in 2032.

The mega-battery will allow Origin to use its existing plant network infrastructure and connections long after power plants have stopped producing energy by burning coal.

The batteries will also support the transition of New South Wales’ energy grid away from fossil fuels and the influx of new solar and wind projects in the coming decades.

“We recognize that we have an important role to play in positioning the Origin power generation portfolio to support Australia’s rapid transition to renewable energy,” said Jarvis.

“Eraring’s large-scale batteries will help us better support renewable energy and maintain a reliable supply for our customers, by having long-life storage ready to be sent to the grid when renewable sources are not available.

“Deployment of these batteries in Eraring will support Origin’s orderly transition from coal-fired power generation by 2032, while complementing the policy objectives of the NSW energy roadmap.”

The mega-battery will be built in three phases, with the first phase due to be completed by the end of next year.

The race is on for Australia’s largest battery

The Origin plan follows a similar announcement from French energy giant Neoen, who last month submitted planning documents for a 500MW mega-battery to be built in western NSW.

Neoen, who partnered with Tesla to build South Australia’s 150MW battery (which is still the world’s largest lithium-ion battery energy storage system) plans to build a new 500MW battery at the site of the former Wallerawang power plant, previously owned by Energy Australia. it is disabled.

Neoen is also working with Tesla again to build a 300MW battery near Geelong in Victoria. The announcement was made in November.

As of October 2020, Neoen has more than 1.6 gigawatts of renewable assets in operation or under construction in Australia, represents more than $ 3 billion in investment, and intends to reach 3 gigawatts, worth about $ 6 billion, by 2022.

Origin’s proposed 700MW battery, and Neoen’s 500MW battery in western NSW, will be the world’s two largest storage devices, and will be worth a combined $ 1 billion.

The Origin battery will be four times larger than Tesla’s

Marnie Shaw, a research leader in the Battery Storage and Grid Integration Program at Australian National University, said it was a “big announcement”.

“The new battery, to give you an idea of ​​the scale, is more than four times the size of Australia’s largest battery in South Australia at Hornsdale,” said Dr Shaw, referring to the Tesla battery owned and operated by Neoen (Dr Shaw was a research partner for Neoen).

“I was surprised because we were not used to big numbers like this with batteries, but also not surprised because it was so needed.

“This is an important next step to support the installation of renewable energy projects on a very large scale in NSW.

“This will easily take advantage of the existing transmission assets in Eraring.

“You take advantage of existing substations and power lines. Batteries will play an important role in stabilizing the power grid as we move to renewable energy.”

Tesla batteries have supported South Australia’s renewable energy generation.(AC News: Charles Brice)

Dr Shaw says coal-fired power plants become more and more unreliable with age, so you need batteries nearby to provide safety and stable power stabilization.

“In addition, to get renewable energy, you need stable power storage,” he said.

“There is a large amount of investment going into renewable energy in NSW.”

The Australian Energy Market operator (AEMO) told the ABC that with new projects being proposed, there are now nearly 7000MW of battery storage under planning across Australia.

That’s enough to power 3.5 million homes.

Dr Shaw said the private sector would also benefit from more policy certainty from the Federal Government.

“It will definitely be better to get a clearer signal from the Federal Government about their strategy to support investment in renewable energy going forward,” he said.

“That will allow smaller firms to play a role in the transition as well as less financial risk.

“The Australian Energy Market operator has a plan, an integrated systems plan, but will again benefit from Federal Government support.

“People should care about these batteries because they support our transition to a low-carbon economy that reduces the impact of climate change, costs energy and supports new investment and jobs in Australia.”

A big step towards a low emissions future

Tony Wood, an energy analyst at the Grattan Institute, said the Origin battery plan was a big step towards transitioning to a low-emission future.

“And I think what you can see here are companies that want to get ahead of that change, so they are in a good position when opportunities start to emerge,” he told ABC Radio.

“It won’t be built tomorrow, but even the first phase of construction at the end of next year is a pretty aggressive schedule.

“I believe it will be one of the most interesting [battery projects], but this is not the last, “he said.

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UN leadership urges leaders of each country to declare ‘climate emergency’ | Instant News


LONDON / BRUSSELS (Reuters) – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is calling on countries to declare a “climate emergency” on Saturday, as world leaders marking the fifth anniversary of the Paris climate accord making most of the additional pledges relative to the scale of the crisis.

Guterres made his call at a summit aimed at building the momentum behind the Paris accord, supported in recent months by renewed commitments from China and the prospect of US President-elect Joe Biden bringing the United States back into the pact.

Nevertheless, the dozens of leaders who spoke largely offered a shift to existing commitments or pledged bolder steps before important talks in Glasgow in late 2021, rather than making new policy breakthroughs to accelerate the phasing out of fossil fuels.

“Is there anyone who still denies that we face a dramatic emergency?” Guterres, a former Portuguese prime minister who has made climate change his trademark problem, said via video.

“That is why today, I call on all leaders around the world to declare a Climate Emergency in their countries until carbon neutrality is achieved.”

With the effects of climate change getting more pronounced since the Paris agreement – from wildfires in Australia and California to collapsing ice sheets – popular pressure has been increasing on leaders to listen to scientists’ warnings.

Britain, one of the summit hosts, made one of the clearest new commitments, announcing on Friday night it would end direct government support for foreign fossil fuel projects.

Activists hailed the move to pressure other G7 economies to limit support for oil and gas companies.

Renewed pledges to support Paris from countries such as India, Germany and France were greeted less in substance and more to keep hopes alive of faster action to meet the monumental challenge of halving global emissions by 2030 in line with the Paris agreement.

FILE PHOTO: United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres speaks during a press conference at United Nations headquarters in New York City, New York, USA, November 20, 2020. REUTERS / Eduardo Munoz / File Photo

DISAPPOINTMENT AT COAL

Chinese President Xi Jinping, who surprised many in September when he announced the world’s largest climate-warming emitter will be carbon neutral by 2060, and launched targets to accelerate the expansion of wind and solar power.

“China has always respected its commitments,” Xi said.

But China is showing no signs of bowing to calls from Guterres and campaigners to reduce financing for new coal-fired power plants, a major source of emissions.

Japan and South Korea, which both pledged in October to achieve net zero-emissions by 2050, also made no commitments on coal financing – although they pledged to deliver more ambitious emissions targets under the Paris agreement.

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan, on the other hand, has won praise for saying the country “will no longer have power based on coal”. It is not clear what that promise means for Pakistan’s existing plans to build coal-fired power plants under a deal with China.

Argentina, Barbados, Canada, Colombia, Iceland and Peru were among 15 countries that shifted from “incremental” to “big” in their emission pledges, said UN hosts, Britain and France in a statement.

Climate negotiators say the Paris process has started to look much stronger than it was six months ago, with countries representing about 65% of global carbon emissions now expected to have committed to achieving zero net greenhouse gas emissions or carbon neutrality by the next inception. year.

But activists point to the still gaping gap between the pace of action and Paris’ goal of limiting global temperature rise fast enough to avert the impact of the catastrophe.

“This is the melting of the ice sheet; the wildfires that are sweeping closer to the homes of climate crisis deniers; drought that disturbs the resources of living things; the floods are reminding many of us that we cannot escape, ”Selina Neirok Leem, a campaigner from the Marshall Islands, told the meeting.

Top producers Australia and Brazil have not made sufficiently ambitious promises to qualify to speak, diplomats said.

“TURN THE CORNER”

Guterres said the economic recovery package following the COVID-19 pandemic was an opportunity to act on the climate – but said the G20 countries had so far spent 50% more of their stimulus on sectors related to fossil fuels than on cleaner energy. .

“This is unacceptable,” said Guterres. “The trillions of dollars needed for COVID recovery is the money we borrow from future generations.”

The European Union, which plans to spend 30% of its 1.8 trillion euro ($ 2.2 trillion) budget and its COVID-19 recovery fund on climate action, pushed through Friday’s 2030 climate pledge, which aims to cut emissions by at least 55%. 2030, from 1990 levels.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson urged the world to work together to tackle the “toxic tea drink” from the greenhouse gases that now blankets the planet, as investors and businesses underscore their support for action.

“We call on companies and governments around the world to do all we can to make 2021 the year we turn forever,” said the Chief Executive of Apple Inc. Tim Cook.

($ 1 = 0.8257 euros)

Reporting by Matthew Green and Kate Abnett; Edited by Alex Richardson, Tom Brown, Frances Kerry and William Mallard

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COLUMN-China’s coal imports show suffering beyond Australia: Russell | Instant News


(Opinions expressed here are those of the author, columnist for Reuters.)

* Total seaborne coal imports from China vs from Australia, Indonesia: tmsnrt.rs/38rY7a5

LAUNCESTON, Australia, 10 Nov (Reuters) – China’s coal imports fell in October to their lowest levels this year, with supplies from Australia being hit hard amid ongoing political bickering.

However, there are other factors at work and while the decline in imports from Australia is the main culprit, it is not the only story that is playing out.

China imported 13.73 million tonnes of coal of all types in October, according to customs data, down 27% from September and 47% weaker than October 2019.

A breakdown of imports by country is not yet available, but Refinitiv vessel and port tracking data shows that the main suppliers, Australia and Indonesia, are experiencing a significant decline.

Cross-sea imports totaled 10.03 million tonnes in October, according to Refinitiv, with differences in official figures explained by customs data including land imports from neighboring countries, especially Mongolia.

Of the seaborne imports, the top supplier was Indonesia with 3.14 million tonnes, down 26.8% from 4.29 million in September.

China’s imports from Australia fell to 2.25 million tonnes, down 62% from 5.87 million in September.

These figures suggest that Australia has indeed been targeted by Beijing, with the government venting its displeasure with Canberra’s calls for an international investigation into the origins of the new trafficked coronavirus.

It’s not just coal that has been hit by the cooling of relations between China and Australia, with reports that customs officials have informed importers that shipments of copper ore, barley, sugar, wood and lobster will also face increased scrutiny.

So far, however, Beijing has avoided increasing restrictions on two very important commodities, iron ore and liquefied natural gas, perhaps because it will make it more difficult for China to find alternative supplies, particularly for iron ore.

INDONESIA HIT

However, while October’s coal import figures look dire to Australia, the first 10 months of data suggest that Indonesia should also be worried.

China’s imports from Indonesia, the world’s largest sender of thermal coal used for electricity generation, fell 24.5% in the first 10 months of 2020 to 86.88 million tonnes from 115.03 million in the same period last year, according to Refinitiv.

Imports from Australia fell by a little over 10.6% to 70.49 million tonnes from 79.85 million, perhaps a reflection that most of Australia’s supply is coking coal, used to make steel, and finding alternatives is somewhat more difficult, with the United States, Canada, and Mongolia are only real options.

In addition, China appears to be trying to diversify its coal suppliers, with shipments from Russia increasing so far this year.

China’s sea freight imports from Russia in the first 10 months of this year were 28.57 million tonnes, up 25.8% from 22.28 million in the same period last year.

There is another trend to consider as well, with China limiting customs clearance for coal towards the end of the year in an attempt to keep import volumes at a fairly constant level each year.

This trend shows that only 2.77 million tonnes were cleared in December 2019 and 10.23 million in December 2018, and in both years imports in the fourth quarter showed a dramatic decline from the following quarter.

That pattern is likely to repeat itself in 2020, meaning fourth-quarter imports may be significantly lower than imports for the rest of the year.

The main question for coal exporters is how the pain is shared, and here the numbers show that Australia is taking a big hit, but so is Indonesia. (Edited by Christian Schmollinger)

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China’s ban on coal could cost Australia $ 15 billion a year | Instant News


In June last year, Sydney residents woke up to the unexpected sight of the Chinese Navy at the harbor. For some, it is a worrying sign that the Morrison government may allow Australia to be pulled too far into Beijing’s orbit.

At that time the Prime Minister Scott Morrison said an unannounced warship arrival had been planned for some time and it was a “reciprocal visit” after an Australian naval vessel visited China.

Now, less than 18 months later, things are very different between Canberra and Beijing, with diplomatic and trade relations seemingly deteriorating with each passing day.

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And it’s not just relations between Australia and China that have changed dramatically since the COVID-19 pandemic began in Wuhan, China in January.

India, Japan and the United States have all pressed for increased cooperation with Australia on everything from supply chain security to cementing a potential alliance such as NATO in the Indo-Pacific.

The ongoing transformation of the Indo-Pacific geo-strategic balance is likely to have played a role in further accelerating Canberra’s deterioration in trade relations with Beijing.

To date Beijing has chosen to target a number of Australian exports to China, including but not limited to, barley, wine, wheat and beef.

This trade action undoubtedly damaged the affected industries and businesses, but at the same time when compared to the large volume of Australian exports to China, it is actually relatively small.

However, in recent weeks, there have been worrying signs that Beijing may add a much larger and economically vital industry to its list of targets, our coal exports.

According to a report from shipping news website Splash, in late September, there were more than 20 large bulk carriers with cargo spaces filled with Australian coal waiting to be unloaded at Tangshan Jingtang Port in Northeast China.

RELATED: ‘Stop immediately’: China’s warning to the US

Delays in loading and unloading goods are not uncommon at Chinese ports, either because of the monthly import quotas imposed by the Chinese Communist Party or simply because of logistical challenges due to heavy traffic volume.

But this time was different. Instead of a delay of up to 45 days, a shipment of Australian coal exports was forced to take place last year, in which case most of these ships have been waiting to unload for more than three months.

This problem is not limited to Jingtang port, there are many other ships experiencing the same problem at several other ports in the industrial heart of Northeast China.

In recent days the possible reasons for this delay have become clear, Chinese authorities have reportedly banned imports of Australian coal indefinitely.

Amid the backdrop of the ongoing unilateral trade war between Beijing and Canberra, Australia’s coal import ban will mark the biggest escalation in the conflict so far.

By banning Australian coal imports, Beijing will effectively spend $ 15 billion annually in the Australian economy, just as it is trying to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to analysts, the ban could be imposed for the long term.

“China is less dependent on Australian coal imports than it is to, say, iron ore, therefore we have little reason to doubt that this oral warning can last indefinitely as an act of potential retaliation for recent political tensions, “Navigate Commodities managing director Atilla said Widnell.

Although there has been no official written notification of the ban, Beijing has already passed word of the ban verbally across China’s shipping industry, possibly to avoid potential complaints by Australia to the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Outside of China, worldwide demand for coal is still not recovering to pre-pandemic levels. As the global economic recovery is progressing more slowly than economists anticipated, it is now also facing further challenges in the form of second and third waves of the virus in much of the world.

Unfortunately for Australia in today’s global economic environment, its influence on the coal trade with Beijing has effectively evaporated.

Global steel production has collapsed, with Japanese steel manufacturing dropping to its lowest level in 52 years and European unions warning 50 percent of European steelmaking capacity could be lost by the time the pandemic ends.

With demand for thermal and metallurgical coal (steelmaking) likely to remain well below pre-pandemic levels for years to come, Beijing has chosen the right time to strike.

With the global economy set to remain weak for years to come, it is very likely that China’s ban on Australian coal exports will be enforced in the future.

While exporting coal may be viewed by some as an insignificant relic of the past, for our economy the reality is a little different. China currently consumes about $ 15 billion worth of Australian coal exports a year.

As the country struggles to recover from the pandemic and the ensuing recession, the potential loss of coal exports to China in the current economic environment could add months or even a year to the length of the country’s economic recovery.

With Beijing pledging to become carbon neutral by 2060 and renewable energy gaining popularity, the decline in coal exports is a reality Australia will have to face sooner or later.

But as the pandemic continues to wreak havoc abroad and at home, many never imagined that China’s thirst for Australian coal could effectively stop overnight.

The Morrison government reserves the right to assert Australia’s sovereignty and freedom from Beijing’s growing influence. However, it should also be acknowledged that this independence has a significant cost.

Ultimately, this is one we as a nation should be willing to pay for, but the frustrated Chinese Communist Party has ensured that Australia can pay the hefty costs of its defiance far faster than many thought.

Tarric Brooker is a freelance journalist and social commentator @Avidator

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New Zealand PM Ardern promised to phase out coal-fired boilers, reducing emissions in a climate boost | Instant News


FILE PHOTO: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern participates in a televised debate with national leader Judith Collins on TVNZ in Auckland, New Zealand, 22 September 2020. Fiona Goodall / Pool via REUTERS

SYDNEY (Reuters) – New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Wednesday that her government would stop coal-fired boilers and reduce carbon emissions from public transport buses if they return to power in voting on October 17.

Ardern, who is also the leader of the Labor Party, said his government would enact laws to prevent the installation of new boilers and replace existing ones with electric alternatives to reduce emissions.

The government will also create a NZ $ 50 million ($ 32.9 million) fund to help local councils purchase zero-emission buses by 2025.

“Over the past three years we have laid the groundwork for achieving our 2050 climate obligation,” said the prime minister. “But much remains to be done.”

He said the latest initiatives to tackle the problem of climate change build on plans that were put in place during his first term.

“During our first term in government, climate change was at the center of all our policy work and commitments. This is closely tied to our decisions on issues such as housing, agriculture, waste, energy and transportation, ”Ardern said.

Climate change is a major issue in New Zealand’s elections, which according to a series of polls the Ardern Labor Party is expected to win.

Proud of being one of the most beautiful and beautiful countries in the world, New Zealand introduced a climate change curriculum at its school last month.

Parliament passed a zero carbon bill last year and there are other steps being prepared to limit the impacts of climate change.

Reporting by Renju Jose; Edited by Jacqueline Wong

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