Community batteries launched in Ipswich

Queensland has launched its first community batteries in a $10 million public-private renewable energy initiative.

Mick de Brenni

The partnership between government energy company Energex and ASX listed retailer Origin will deliver 35 locally-manufactured neighbourhood batteries across Ipswich, the government says.

The first batteries will be installed in coming weeks.

The batteries will be owned, installed and maintained by Energex and operated by Origin in the wholesale energy market.

The initiative will include up to 30 power pole-mounted batteries capable of soaking up the equivalent solar from 13 household systems, and five gound-level batteries capable of absorbing 40 household solar systems.

The community batteries complement large-scale network-connected batteries being rolled out across the Ergon Energy network in regional Queensland.

Renewables minister Mick de Brenni says the neighbourhood batteries offer a range of benefits including increased energy reliability, reduced costs, and cleaner energy supply.

Minister de Brenni inspects one of the battery cells that will go inside the pole-mounted batteries on February 2, 2023 (image supplied by Energex)

“These neighbourhood batteries will store cheap excess energy generated by the equivalent of nearly 600 rooftop solar systems during the day,” the minister said in a statement.

Executive General Manager of Future Energy at Origin, Anthony Lucas says the development of smart, connected, low carbon solutions like neighbourhood batteries is central to Origin’s energy transition plans.

“This is an exciting project that will help explore different ways to create and share the benefits of neighbourhood batteries with customers,” he said in a statement.

Energex says South East Queensland has one of the highest penetrations of solar PV systems in the world and has been earmarked as one of the primary target markets by key players in the Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS) market.

Queensland’s Energy and Jobs Plan has set a target of 70 per cent renewable energy by 2032

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