Tilt’s Highbury pumped-storage plant entering planning phase

Australian renewable energy operator, Tilt Renewables (Tilt) announced is “entering the planning approval phase” for the 300-MW Highbury pumped hydropower storage scheme at the decommissioned Highbury Quarry, located northeast of Adelaide City, in the state of South Australia, Australia.

Tilt made the announcement today saying the estimated cost for the project is about A$400 million.

Tilt expects to use the next 12 months for feasibility studies and approvals processes, ahead of financial close in June 2019.  The project would start up in late 2021.

Tilt Renewables Chief Executive Officer, Deion Campbell, says “We see this project as a real winner for the South Australian community. Not only will we be able to support energy security and contribute to reducing power price volatility, we’ll also have the option to open up some of the 350-hectare site for public recreational use with potential for walking trails, picnic areas and outdoor activities.”

The pumped hydro facility would consist of an upper lake, which will be the existing water-filled former dolomite quarry, a lower lake along the Halls Road edge of the site, two penstock pipes connecting the lakes and a powerhouse building on the eastern shore of the lower lake.

In October, HydroWorld.com reported Australian developer Genex Power Ltd. selected a joint venture that includes McConnell Dowell Constructors and Downer EDI Ltd. as its preferred engineering, procurement and construction contractor for the 250-MW Kidston II pumped storage plant.

The 250 MW pumped storage component is half of what Genex is calling Kidston “Stage 2.” Also included is a 270 MW solar installation.

Genex received approval from the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility to continue to the full due diligence phase for the project in July.

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Gregory B. Poindexter formerly was an associate editor for HydroWorld.com.

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