South Australia calls for storage, renewable energy projects

Earlier this year, South Australia experienced rolling blackouts that increased the interest in distributed energy, including energy storage, as a way of reinforcing the state’s power grid.

Back then, Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted that he could solve the state’s power problems in 100 days with an energy storage project or he would build it for free.

South Australia Premier Jay Weatherill took Musk up on his tweet and in July, said Tesla had won the award to build a 100 MW, 129 MWh energy storage project at a wind farm operated by Neoen of France.

The Tesla project will be one of the projects awarded under the recently announced call for proposals. South Australia is also looking for renewable energy firming projects that can help integrate renewables onto the grid and make them available on demand. Those projects could include energy storage, synchronous inertia, or fast frequency response.

The state is also seeking bulk energy storage projects, either associated with renewable energy resources or standalone storage projects of up to 400 MWh. In the third category, the state is seeking large-scale dispatchable bioenergy projects. All proposals are due Sept. 28.

“We want to support innovative companies and entrepreneurs in a state that is nurturing cutting-edge technology,” Jay Weatherill, South Australia’s premier, said in a statement.