ING finances 100 MW/150 MWh storage project in Australia

Vena Australia has reached financial close on its Wandoan South Big Battery, thanks to ING Australia. The international bank is increasingly financing green energy projects, but this is the first standalone battery project it has financed in the Asia Pacific. Vena Energy Australia says this phase is just the beginning of a project that is to feature 650 MW of solar PV and 450 MW of battery storage.

From pv magazine Australia

ING Australia is financing the Wandoan South Big Battery in the Western Downs region of Queensland for Singapore-based Vena Energy Australia. At 100 MW and 150 MWh, the project is the largest battery energy storage system (BESS) that Queensland has ever seen. 

The Wandoan battery, whose 150 MWh is estimated to be capable of powering 57,000 homes, is set to cost AUD 120 million (US$90.6 million) and deliver services to AGL in a 15-year deal, including full operational dispatch rights. The reach of financial close therefore came as welcome news for AGL’s Chief Operating Officer, Markus Brokhof. “Grid-scale batteries like Wandoan South BESS allow AGL to leverage excess solar and wind generation in Queensland while providing capacity when renewable sources are not generating,” he said. 

The Western Downs region of Queensland is fast on its way to becoming a clean energy hub. It is already home to the under construction 460 MW Western Downs Green Power Hub, and also the 200 MW Blue Grass Solar Farm, so a big battery won’t be short of charge. 

ING Australia’s Head of Wholesale Banking, Charles Ho, said that ING has committed more than AUD$1.2 billion to green financing and renewable projects in Australia. “ING has a strong commitment to financing the Australian energy sector and to helping clients in transitioning to a lower carbon future,” said Ho. 

According to ING’s global head of energy, Michiel de Haan, this is the first time ING has financed a standalone battery project in the Asia Pacific. Vena Energy, which commissioned the 95 MW Tailem Bend Solar Farm in South Australia last year, said that the Wandoan South BESS project is merely the first phase in the larger Wandoan South Project, which will eventually feature 650 MW of solar PV and 450 MW of BESS capacity. 

“We are delighted to be delivering the first stage of Vena Energy’s Wandoan South Project,” said Anil Nangia, head of Vena Energy Australia. “We look forward to participating in the transition towards renewable energy in Queensland by delivering the Wandoan South BESS in the heart of the Western Downs.”

Construction of the Wandoan South BESS began in October 2020 under EPC contractor Doosan GridTech Australia. 

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