Home Economy Ayala’s ACEN, Marubeni forge A$250-M energy storage deal in Australia

Ayala’s ACEN, Marubeni forge A$250-M energy storage deal in Australia

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AYALA-BACKED ACEN Australia and Marubeni Asian Power Singapore announced on Tuesday a joint investment of A$250 million, or around P9 billion, in a 400-megawatt-hour battery energy storage system (BESS) project in Australia.

The two energy companies had signed a cooperation agreement in Melbourne, Australia, Ayala’s ACEN Corp. said in a stock exchange disclosure.

The BESS project from the 50-50 partnership is slated for completion by 2025.

“The agreement is another milestone for ACEN Australia’s inaugural project, New England Solar, which stands as a major contributor to the National Electricity Market,” ACEN Australia Managing Director David Pollington said in a statement.

“Once finished, it will be one of the nation’s largest co-located solar and battery energy storage facilities and enables energy to be stored and made available to the grid when it is needed,” he added.

New England Solar is a 720-megawatt (MW) solar and battery project that is under construction near the town of Uralla in the New England region of New South Wales.

The stage 1 of the solar facility, which has a capacity of 400 MW, started generating power for New South Wales and Queensland last year, while the stage 2 is set for construction this year.

ACEN Australia’s renewable energy portfolio comprises more than one gigawatt (GW) of capacity from large-scale renewable energy projects under construction and in operation, with an additional eight GW capacity in the development pipeline.

Marubeni Asian Power Singapore is the Asia-Pacific arm of Marubeni’s power division, having developed, owned, and now operating 35,000 MW worldwide.

In a separate regulatory filing, ACEN said that the same subsidiary had signed an 11-year cooperation agreement with Australian-owned ZEN Energy Retail to advance the power purchase agreement documentation for an offtake of up to 220 MW of the New England Solar project.

The partnership allows the project to “ensure a steady revenue stream” through the creation and sale of large-scale generation certificates, which is a mechanism used to reduce the cost of renewable energy, the company said. 

“ZEN Energy is Australian-owned and proud to be collaborating with ACEN Australia to help customers drive down emissions and be leaders in a zero-carbon world. It is an important step towards ZEN Energy’s goal to create a safe 1.5-degree world for everyone,” ZEN Energy CEO Anthony Garnaut said.

ZEN Energy is Australia’s “first 1.5-degree Celsius electricity retailer,” committed to forming long-term and sustainable partnerships.

Currently, ACEN has approximately 4,700 MW of attributable capacity spanning the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, India, and Australia.

On Tuesday, the company’s shares went down by eight centavos or 1.93% to close at P4.07 each. — Sheldeen Joy Talavera

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