The Genex Kidston Pumped Hydro Energy Storage (PHES) project will develop a pumped hydro energy storage facility to produce approximately 250MW / 2,000MWh of dispatchable (baseload) power for export to the electricity grid.
The Kidston Pumped Hydro Energy Storage project acknowledges that as the share of variable renewable energy in Australia’s power system continues to grow, large-scale storage will play a key role in ensuring reliability of supply and support for power system security. PHES is expected to be the primary technology to meet large scale energy storage requirements, including to balance variable generation, over time periods greater than two hours. PHES has the ability to provide critical system strength services that are expected to be required with the increase in inverter based generation.
Genex will deploy a 250 MW, 8 hour storage PHES asset into the North Queensland market. The project will be located at the old Kidston Gold Mine, around 275km north-west of Townsville.
This will be the first PHES deployment project in over 35 years in Australia and the first PHES project in Australia to be delivered by a private developer.
The level of available storage in the market will be increased to facilitate an additional 500MW of renewable energy penetration at Kidston and a potential further 500MW at Mt Fox.
The project will demonstrate and share knowledge on the effectiveness (both technically and commercially) of the development, construction and operation of the PHES facility.
The project will continue to demonstrate and share the lessons learnt and business case for PHES in Australia, including assessment of the:
- key development issues
- construction timelines, costing and issues
- operational metrics of PHES
- regulatory environment for PHES, and
- opportunities for subsequent PHES projects across Australia.
The project will also demonstrate and share lessons on the broader economic costs and benefits of the project, including appraisal of the economic costs and benefits to consumers and market participants of situating PHES projects at disused mine sites and elsewhere around Australia.