Transgrid’s Project EnergyConnect (PEC) has been declared as Critical State Significant Infrastructure (CSSI) by the New South Wales Government.
The proposed interconnector will run approximately 900km from Robertson in South Australia to Wagga Wagga in New South Wales. PEC will provide energy security to South Australia and unlock new renewable generation in south-west New South Wales.
TransGrid’s Chief Executive, Paul Italiano, says the CSSI classification means the planning approval process in New South Wales can be expedited to meet delivery deadlines.
“PEC is a very important part of Australia’s energy future,” Mr Italiano said.
“Granting CSSI status to this project is a really positive development, and a clear indication of how important PEC is to the evolution of the National Energy Market.”
The interconnector will create a diversified supply path between South Australia and New South Wales, which will reduce the impact of outages in extreme weather.
“Any section of the network could break down and you could still have energy flowing around the system. It’s a very significant contribution to the system’s security,” Mr Italiano said.
Major construction is expected to begin by mid 2021.
TransGrid has engaged with the market to identify potential contracting partners to deliver the project, and is launching a formal process in the coming weeks expecting to receive tenders by early December 2019.