Member for Moore Shane Love has welcomed the release of a feasibility study that recommends a microgrid to address power reliability issues in Kalbarri.
The $300,000 Western Power study has confirmed the technical feasibility of a large renewable-energy connected battery to improve the reliability of the 140 kilometre network between Geraldton and Kalbarri.
The microgrid would incorporate network, solar and wind generation as well as energy storage.
Mr Love said news of the proposed microgrid would be roundly welcomed by Kalbarri’s residents and visitors.
“Following a number of disastrous outages in 2014, I lodged a grievance with Energy Minister Mike Nahan in April 2014,” he said.
“At that time Minister Nahan conceded that the grid was inadequate and gave an undertaking that Western Power would consider providing stand-alone generation for Kalbarri.
“The Minister has delivered on that promise.”
Western Power Executive Manager of Asset Management Seán McGoldrick said the report was an essential and exhaustive process involving 12,500 computer simulations to test the viability and technical requirements of the project.
“The findings mean we can go forward with the confidence and proof that there are bigger picture reliability solutions that the network can offer to edge-of-grid customers in areas like Kalbarri,” Mr McGoldrick said
The microgrid will have a utility-scale battery as the centrepiece that is charged by a combination of network, wind and solar that can support the needs of the community during an outage on the network between Geraldton and Kalbarri.
It will also boost the resilience of the network by sending surplus energy to Geraldton.
Western Power is calling for feedback on the study to be emailed to: email@example.com
The Kalbarri Microgrid feasibility study is available in full at: https://westernpower.com.au/media/2072/kalbarri-microgrid-feasibility-study.pdf