#Official Energy Thread

Developments in Regional South Australia. Including Port Lincoln, Victor Harbor, Wallaroo, Gawler and Mount Barker.
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Will
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Port Augusta Selected for Wind Farm Project

#1 Post by Will » Tue Jul 11, 2006 10:48 am

Port Augusta selected for wind farm project

9:30 AM July 11

South Australia's green energy targets have been given a boost with a decision to build a wind farm near Port Augusta.
The company involved with the Lincoln Gap project, Wind Energy Solutions, says the project will create a up to 60 fulltime jobs during construction.
Company director Shane Darcy says the company chose South Australia because of the State Government's green energy policies.

"We are quite happy to have been involved in windfarming in South Australia, South Australia is a very progressive state, forward looking, much more so than the Federal Government in that they themselves [are] setting targets for renewable energy in the state," he said.
Nearly 60 turbines will be built at the site, south-west of Port Augusta, sometime next year.
Mr Darcy says it's not the only project it has planned in the state.
"We are looking at several other sites at the moment; it'll just be a case of which one would come first, we have a list of certain criteria that will need to be fulfilled and we need to look at the wind farm for about 12 months before we can make any decision on the viability of the farm," he said.
"At the moment, pole position is the Lincoln Gap farm."


Source: ABC

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#2 Post by Algernon » Wed Jul 12, 2006 7:41 am

I think it's cool news from the perspective that it's always fun to see new trends developing. I'm also a keen environmentalist so of course I support renewable energy initiatives.


What worries me though though is that we'll rapidly reach the point at which wind energy is of diminishing use to us. We'll have our requirements covered in winter, but in the dead still summer air when energy demand is at its peak we'll have a whole bunch of windfarms laying idle.

Also factor in that there's also significant infrastructure upgrades required to accommodate wind power on the grid, and as such we may be forgoing opportunities to invest in other, more stable/consistent renewable energy projects such as my personal pet favourite Solar Towers.

It's increasingly likely that no single renewable energy source will be able to meet all our requirements in future, so we need to look to both invest in a range of renewable power sources, and at the same time implement aggressive demand management policies to take the sting out of increasing power consumption. It's not going to be easy but SA does appear to be headed in the right direction.

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#3 Post by Edgar » Thu Jul 20, 2006 9:44 am

What's a Windfarm?

You mean this?

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#4 Post by Howie » Thu Jul 20, 2006 10:15 am

That's the one edgar.

Also guys, did any catch that documentary on abc a few weeks back speaking about projects to harness the sea's wave power? Looked really promising, apparently it costs less than solar+wind+coal to produce equivalent amounts of power.

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#5 Post by Edgar » Thu Jul 20, 2006 3:01 pm

How much power can one of the generator produce?

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#6 Post by Howie » Thu Jul 20, 2006 3:08 pm

they're in prototype phase right now
44-24OPD plans call for eventually placing 40 Pelamis units each in offshore wave power farms (covering approximately one square kilometer) capable of generating a total 25 MW of electricity - sufficient energy for more than 20,000 homes. The prototype unit will generate 0.75 MW.

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#article: SA tops $500m in hot rocks boom

#7 Post by crawf » Mon Oct 23, 2006 12:30 pm

SA tops $500m in hot rocks boom
GREG KELTON, STATE POLITICAL REPORTER
October 23, 2006 12:15am

EIGHT new exploration licence applications have been issued for geothermal energy, pushing investment in South Australia above $500 million.

State Government figures show the investment over the next decade is almost 10 times that for the rest of the nation.
Mineral Resources Minister Paul Holloway had described the geothermal investment levels as "unrivalled".

"The further good news for the state is there appears to be no sign of waning interest," he said. "It is adding to the excitement being generated in the state by the boom in mineral and resources exploration.

"I point out that this figure (the $500 million) does not include the investment for deployment." He also said there were encouraging signs of greatly increased petroleum exploration in the state.

Geothermal energy is created by pumping water underground and harnessing the energy in super-heated steam which returns to the surface.

Last month, Adelaide company Petratherm announced better than expected drilling results in the state's Far North.

Petratherm has been drilling for hot rocks 130km east of Leigh Creek aiming to produce electricity from the superheated steam which could eventually be used by the nearby Beverley uranium mine.

A conference on SA resources and energy was told in May this year that just one geothermal exploration licence had the energy potential to yield electricity equivalent to several Snowy Mountain hydro-electric schemes.

It was also told that at $60 a megawatt hour, geothermal electricity was emission-free and more cost-effective than nuclear power.

Mr Holloway said that on the basis of the continual growth in geothermal exploration the Government was confident it could lead the nation on the path to establish energy reserves of national significance.

He said the total number of licence applications for geothermal energy was 95.

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#8 Post by Ho Really » Mon Oct 23, 2006 9:43 pm

Geothermal is an interesting concept. It's renewable and enviromentally friendly. The only issue is we have to pump water to the location before any electricity is produced. Is it going to come from underground, from the Murray-Darling or the sea? When the water eventually escapes as steam, it has to be replenished.

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#9 Post by Jamo » Mon Oct 30, 2006 12:48 pm

It is interesting to note that the hot fractured rock process of developing geothermal energy is a closed system, ie meaning steam is not given off in the transfer of energy. The system delivering the heat from underground is a closed loop passing through a heat exchanger at the surface which then converts the heat to electricity and as a result is not water "expensive".

A side issue to this is the federal govt's decision not to fund Geodynamics 40MW demonstration power plant under the low emission research fund, making one question whether the govt is serious on supporting new forms of low emission technology. Of course much money flowed to the support of the traditional coal industry and its reduction of greenhouse gases!

Theoretically there is enough energy to supply Australia's electricity needs for the next 50-100 yrs and the technology needs to be developed to enable this to happen!

Disclosure: I am a shareholder of Geodynamics

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#10 Post by rhino » Fri Apr 20, 2007 3:51 pm

Algernon wrote: We'll have our requirements covered in winter, but in the dead still summer air when energy demand is at its peak we'll have a whole bunch of windfarms laying idle.
While it's true that there are days when the wind doesn't blow, wind farms are generally sited in areas where the wind does blow, at the required strength, (too much wind and they're stopped for safety reasons) for most of the year. The fact that there is more demand in summer and winter for heating and cooling purposes is taken into account. I dare say that is the reason the company is going to keep an eye on things for 12 months before comitting - the site looks good now but it needs to be monitored for a year to see if it's as good as it looks.
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New Power Generator on Torrens Island

#11 Post by rhino » Thu May 10, 2007 3:31 pm

Origin Energy is going to build a new gas-fired power generator on Torrens Island.

From today's Advertiser:

New $80m generator
CRAIG BILDSTIEN
May 10, 2007 12:00pm

ORIGIN Energy is to build a new $80 million gas-fired generator at Torrens Island - a move that could lead to cheaper power bills, the company says.

The 120 megawatt power station will more than double the capacity of its existing 95 MW Quarantine station.

Origin aims to have the plant on line for the 2008-09 summer to meet peak demand on hot days.

It says the facility will greatly improve the reliability of the power supply and could help drive down retail prices for consumers.

The state's current summer generating capacity is 3255 MW, with a record demand of 2872 MW achieved last summer.

The construction, next to its other plant, will create about 100 jobs. But once operational, it will not require an expanded workforce.

It will be powered by natural gas from the SEAGas pipeline into Adelaide. Origin owns a one-third share of SEAGas.

The new open cycle gas turbine plant will be supplied by the General Electric Company.

Origin signed a contract with the GEC in Adelaide today, witnessed by Urban Development Minister Paul Holloway, who approved the development in March.

Origin manager of major development, Andrew Stock, described the company's investment as "great news for SA consumers".

"It means more supply, greater reliability of supply and could drive down prices," he said.

Origin has invested more than $670 million in energy infrastructure in SA since 2000. It owns and operates the Quarantine and Ladbroke Grove power stations and is a part owner of the Osborne co-generation plant.

The company employs more than 800 people in SA and retails natural gas, electricity and LPG to 340,000 customers.
cheers,
Rhino

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#12 Post by Howie » Thu May 10, 2007 7:03 pm

That's awesome news. Thanks for posting that. You're obviously very quick with energy / water related news.

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#13 Post by shuza » Thu May 10, 2007 7:42 pm

Sounds great news. Why do we have blackouts then if our demand capacity falls short of our supply? Doesnt make sense seeing as that we would have about 300MW of reserves.

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#14 Post by AtD » Thu May 10, 2007 9:57 pm

The problem is as much to do with transmission as generation. Some of the infrastructure is old and was placed before houses all had computers and ducted air con as standard.

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#15 Post by urban » Fri May 11, 2007 11:18 am

Apparently gas power stations use significantly less water and produce significantly less CO2 than coal power so this is a win-win.

Gas seems to have been forgotten in the whole renewables vs nuclear debate. Is there a severely limited supply of gas?

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