Former gold mine to become renewable energy hub
Sydney-based Genex Power will transform the abandoned Kidston Gold Mine in Northern Queensland into a clean energy powerhouse combining solar and storage. The site will host a 50 MW solar project (KSP1), a 250 MW pumped-storage hydro project (KPSHP), and another 270 MW solar project (KSP2).
Kidston’s former status as the largest open-cut gold mine in the country means it already has much of the necessary infrastructure in place. Resources include two large voids filled with water (for the pumped hydro component), a transmission line and substation, an airstrip, and road access to the site.
Construction on the project began in January. When completed, KSP1 will generate 145,000 MWh of energy per year — enough to power more than 25,000 homes. Work on KPSHP will begin in 2018. When it comes online in 2012, it will produce 250 MW of power. KSP2 will be a solar farm that will power the pumps for the hydro storage operation. Powering the pumps with solar will help avoid potential issues with grid outages and energy price volatility. Construction for KSP2 is set to begin in 2018. A more than 100-mile long transmission line is also slated to carry power to the coast, as well as the main Powerlink line between Townsville and Cairns.
Read the full article in Renewable Energy Magazine.