ENERGY STORAGE

ARENA approves A$143m in funding for 370 community batteries in Australia

July 3, 2024

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has conditionally approved up to $143 million to support the roll out of up to 370 community batteries across Australia under its Community Battery Funding Round 1.

All states, and the Northern Territory, are expected to benefit from this programme, unlocking an expected $359 million of investment in renewable energy infrastructure.

The range of energy consumers that will benefit from these batteries include households, hospitals, schools and tertiary education institutions, council facilities, housing developments, social and community housing, sports facilities, libraries, aquatic centres, shopping centres, and regional and remote communities, ARENA said.

ARENA CEO Darren Miller said: “ARENA is pleased to support the roll out of these batteries through our transformative program which will have a significant impact upon Australia’s energy and grid security while delivering cleaner and more cost-effective energy for our communities. We are encouraged to see this important asset class being demonstrated at such a scale and expect that this funding round will kick start the neighbourhood-scale storage sector.”

ARENA received a “strong response” under Round 1, with 140 eligible expressions of interest received, the agency said. Funding has now been conditionally allocated to 21 applications (from 20 applicants); 10 applications requesting $67.3 million under Stream A Distribution Network Service Providers (DNSPs), and 11 applications requesting $75.7 million under Stream B Non-DNSPs.

Specific locations for the batteries are yet to be finalised and are subject to community consultation, planning approvals and entry into commercial agreements.

Recipients:

Stream A (DNSPs)

  • Ausgrid (NSW)
  • Endeavour Energy (NSW)
  • Energex (2 applications, QLD)
  • Ergon Energy (QLD)
  • Horizon Power (WA)
  • Power and Water Corporation (NT)
  • SA Power Networks (SA)
  • Tasmanian Networks (TAS)
  • Western Power (WA)

Stream B (Non-DNSPs)

  • Department for Energy and Mining (SA)
  • Enel X Australia (Multiple states)
  • FRV Services Australia (VIC)
  • Indigo Power (Multiple states)
  • Gemlife (Multiple states)
  • Hydro Tasmania (Multiple states)
  • Mondo Power (VIC)
  • Next Green Group (Multiple states)
  • Shell Energy Retail (NSW)
  • Transport for NSW (NSW)
  • ZEN Energy Retail (NSW)

Locations

Queensland
Conditionally approved locations: 3
Batteries: 69

New South Wales
Conditionally approved locations: 5
Batteries: 95

Victoria
Conditionally approved locations: 2
Batteries: 37

Tasmania
Conditionally approved locations: 1
Batteries: 6

South Australia
Conditionally approved locations: 2
Batteries: 24

Northern Territory
Conditionally approved locations: 1
Batteries: 16

Western Australia
Conditionally approved locations: 2
Batteries: 28

Multiple
Conditionally approved locations: 5
Batteries: 95

TOTAL
Conditionally approved locations: 21
Batteries: 370