Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub (MREH) includes massive battery large enough to support 1 Million homes

    Australia is transitioning its energy grid and the Federal Government recently approved the latest battery storage project, located in Victoria, known as the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub (MREH).

    This $800 million energy storage facility that will support Victoria’s renewable energy zones and stabilise the state’s energy infrastructure.

    MREH will be one of the biggest batteries in the world, with a capacity of 1.6 gigawatt-hours (GWh). It will store renewable energy from wind and solar farms in regional Victoria, and release it when needed to meet demand in Melbourne.

    The project will be built in two stages and the battery will connect to Victoria’s main 500kV transmission line. 

    When South Australia’s big battery was created, it became somewhat of a tourist attraction for those in favour of renewable energy. Given this will overtake that project in size many times over, I expect the same will happen with the MREH. The location is 77 Holden Rd, Plumpton, VIC 3335, which is about 25kms northwest of Melbourne’s CBD.

    Today, Google Maps shows an empty site with a backdrop of the Melbourne skyline.

    The project started with a site selection and feasibility study back in 2019 with detailed plans released by Syncline Energy in August 2021. By November 2022, Equis acquired a 100% stake in the project.

    Construction is scheduled to begin in Q4 2023 and is expected to be completed in 2025. Once operational, it will power more than 1 million households and create up to 365 jobs during construction and 30 ongoing positions. What isn’t known is how long those million households could be supported by the battery alone, for example, if a grid outage occurred during the night when solar inputs to the grid were unavailable.

    As Victoria’s traditional energy generation of coal and gas-fired power stations retire, renewable energy will become an increasingly important source of electricity. However, renewable energy sources are intermittent, energy storage projects like this one from EQUIS Australia are critical in making the switch. Equis has a number of renewable energy projects in Australia including:

    • 200MW/800Mwh Battery in Koolunga, South Australia
    • 300MW/1,200MWh Battery in Calala, Tamworth, NSW
    • 200MW Battery in Lower Wonga, QLD
    • 50MW Battery in Mackay, QLD

    We know renewable energy is cheaper, cleaner, and crucial to helping us cut emissions and reach our goal of net zero by 2050. Projects like this will help us transform our energy system and build it for the future.

    We’re undoing a decade of political fights that stalled progress and cost the environment. This is what action on climate change looks like – cutting emissions, investing in renewables, and better protecting our environment.

    Minister for the Environment and Water, Tanya Plibersek

    Benefits of Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub

    The Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub will offer a number of benefits to Victorians, including:

    • Increased renewable energy generation: MREH will support the development of new wind and solar farms in regional Victoria, helping to increase the state’s renewable energy generation capacity.
    • Lower electricity prices: MREH will help to reduce the volatility of electricity prices by providing a reliable source of backup power and supporting the grid’s voltage and frequency.
    • Improved energy security: MREH will help to improve Victoria’s energy security by reducing its reliance on fossil fuels.
    • Job creation: MREH is expected to create up to 365 jobs during construction and 30 ongoing positions.

    Jason Cartwright
    Jason Cartwright
    Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021


    1. The average house uses 5500 kWh of electricity per year. That’s 15 kWh per day and all hours of the day considered equal, 0.63 kWh per average household hour. 1.6 gwh capacity means 1,600,000 kWh. So, 1,600,00 divided by 0.63 is 2,539,682 hours. So, 2.5M homes powered for 1 hour. So 1M homes will have power during a power out for roughly 2.5 hours, if the battery goes from full capacity to zero. I’d say 2 hours to be safe for 1M homes.

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