Territory Generation has begun conducting a two-part procurement process for a new $30 million 35MW Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) for the Darwin-Katherine grid.

The BESS is expected to deliver cost savings of around $6 million per year and pay for itself in approximately five years.

The BESS is a major step towards the Territory Government’s 50 per cent Renewable Energy Target.

Chief Minister, Michael Gunner, said, “We’ve backed renewables and so have Territorians – they know renewables deliver cleaner, cheaper and secure power.

“Doing whatever it takes to save lives from Coronavirus means throwing the kitchen sink at saving jobs and preparing the Territory for the rebound.

“The cutting-edge technology in our Battery Energy Storage System will reinforce the Northern Territory as the solar capital and comeback capital of Australia.

“I’m backing Territorians, solar and lower prices to get it done – we have a bright future if we all stick together.”

Local businesses are invited to tender for the two-part process which comprises of:

  • Round one: Prequalification seeking to understand industry capability and encouraging innovation
  • Round two: Request for proposals – successful tenderers from round one will be invited to a detailed second stage in December 2020
  • The successful proponent will be awarded in early 2021

The BESS will deliver greater system reliability and security in the Darwin-Katherine power network, as more and more Territorians turn towards renewables.   

Northern Territory Minister for Renewables and Energy, Eva Lawler, said, “The BESS procurement process is a huge step forward in our plan for 50 per cent renewables by 2030.

“We want Territorians to have access to the latest and best technology as we build a stronger and more resilient power system for Territory households and businesses.

“This initiative will help lower power bills while maintaining secure and reliable power for Territorians.”

Territory households and businesses are taking advantage of affordable solar power with rooftop solar PV installations growing by an average of 45 per cent each year since 2010.

Major benefits of the BESS include:

  • Increased stability and reliability of the power supply. Fluctuations caused by the intermittency of solar energy can be managed quickly and efficiently
  • Reduction in carbon emissions for the Territory. Reducing the need for gas-fired spinning reserve can deliver both cost savings of around $6.4 million and emissions reductions of about 50,000 tonnes per annum

The BESS is expected to be a large battery, capable of supplying power system services currently provided by existing gas-fired generation, and is expected to be operational in the second half of 2022.

Territory Generation CEO, Gerhard Laubscher, said, “Territory Generation’s Battery Energy Storage System aims to provide near-instantaneous response to changes in solar load, such as cloud cover.

“Reliability and stability of baseload power is a critical barrier in the uptake of renewable energy across Australia, and I am pleased that we are at the forefront of tackling this issue right here in the Territory.

“We are taking a collaborative approach to project planning with a number of stakeholders across government and industry, to ensure we are maximising value to the Territory.”

This initiative builds on existing Territory Government initiatives, including the $8.3 million Alice Springs BESS; the $5 million Rooftop Solar in Schools program, which is tied to solar technology educational programs and the savings in energy costs are reinvested back into schools; and the successful Home and Business Battery Scheme.  

To view the Battery Energy Storage System tender, visit

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