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The Western Australian Government has completed its first large-scale battery energy storage system (BESS) at Kwinana – with a capacity of 100MW/200MWh – as planning begins for the sites’ second larger battery. 

A further battery system is set to be developed in Collie, due to be one of the biggest battery systems in the world – providing around 500MW for up to four hours.

Through Synergy, the Western Australian Government has delivered the battery at Kwinana, which can store enough energy in reserve to power 160,000 homes for up to two hours.

The system, which involved more than 200 jobs in construction, will now undergo a series of charge and discharge tests before entering the network late 2023.

Battery energy storage systems absorb excess energy from rooftop solar when the sun is shining and release it in the evening, when demand is at its peak – playing a key role in delivering reliable energy to households and businesses.

Following the 2023-24 State Budget, the Western Australian Government confirmed an additional $3 billion investment towards tackling climate change and future-proofing Western Australia’s energy system. $2.3 billion of this commitment has been allocated towards two new battery energy storage systems, including a second system at the Kwinana site. 

The second proposed big battery at Kwinana will provide 200MW of capacity with 800MW hours – four times the energy storage of stage one – expected to be operational by late 2024.

Western Australian Premier, Mark McGowan, said his government is taking action to deliver a cleaner, affordable and reliable energy transition for Western Australia.

“Battery storage systems will be critical to our energy future, allowing us to harness our rooftop solar resources to meet power needs during peak times,” Mr McGowan said.

“With the Kwinana big battery entering operational testing today, we’re moving onto an even bigger battery on site – with four times the capacity.

“It will make our existing electricity system more secure, support the continued uptake of renewables, and set up the state for the long-term.”

Western Australian Energy Minister, Bill Johnston, said Western Australia is a leader in adopting smart solutions and cutting-edge technology for a sustainable energy system. 

“These battery energy storage systems will be crucial in managing household energy demand and supporting the uptake of residential solar,” Mr Johnston said.

“We are committed to delivering cleaner and more reliable power to help us reach our ambitious emissions reduction targets.”

The State Budget also includes $368 million for new large-scale wind energy generation projects – at King Rocks and near Eneabba – as well as $126 million towards electricity network planning and upgrades to support more renewable energy on the grid.

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