• NSW says for its pilot Central-West REZ, total registrations of 113 have been received for a total of 27 GW capacity
  • It represents a value of AUD 38 billion while being oversubscribed by several GWs
  • State government has increased its financing for this project by an additional AUD 31.6 million

The New South Wales (NSW) state government in Australia has been inundated with registrations in response to its registration of interest (ROI) call for its Central-West Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) Pilot issued in May 2020. As against the offered 3 GW capacity, the government has received interests for a whopping 27 GW of renewable energy (see NSW Govt Issues ROI For 3 GW REZ Pilot).

The NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment says a total of 113 registrations have come in representing a total value of AUD 38 billion ($26 billion) for 27 GW capacity.

“With our local communities doing it tough from drought and now the COVID-19 pandemic, this phenomenal response shows the massive opportunity REZs can create with jobs, investment and new revenue streams for regional NSW,” said state’s Deputy Premier John Barilaro.

Central-West REZ is the first among 3 such REZs planned by the state government in its bid to grid connect 17.7 GW of renewable energy capacity to reach net zero emissions target for 2050. It will be the modern-day equivalent of a traditional power station capable of powering 1.3 million homes, added Energy Minister Matt Kean.

The state government expects Central-West Orana REZ to generate investments worth AUD 4.4 billion ($3 billion) along with creating 450 construction jobs and enabling landowners to diversify their income source. NSW government has committed a further AUD 31.6 million ($22 million) to the project taking the total budget to over AUD 40 million ($28 million), shared Kean.

With the additional state government funding the Energy Corporation of NSW will oversee the development of the REZ, coordinate the technical design and planning processes, lead community engagement and oversee the local benefit sharing process.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has also announced AUD 5 million ($3.46 million) in funding to TransGrid for a feasibility study to develop the proposed Central-West Orana REZ. Total cost of the study is AUD 16.2 million ($11 million).