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Network battery to improve energy reliability in Sovereign Hills

The Sovereign Hills area of Port Macquarie, New South Wales, will have a more reliable energy grid thanks to Essential Energy partnering with AGL Energy to install a network battery.

The 2MWh network battery will sit between houses in the region and is designed to absorb extra solar energy produced during the day, which will then be directed into the energy network at times when it is needed.

Connected to an 11kV high voltage distribution wire on the Essential Energy network, this is expected to provide grid voltage regulation support, stabilise frequency and reduce demand on the network while reducing emissions.

AGL Chief Customer Officer, Jo Egan, said that AGL is proud to be supporting Essential Energy in trialling this technology to help ease congestion on the grid.

“AGL is pleased to support Essential Energy in this innovative network battery trial by constructing, commissioning and orchestrating the battery,” Ms Egan said.

“This is the first time AGL is partnering with an energy distributor to install a new grid-scale network battery. We will be sharing the insights with the network and supporting them to design and future proof the network as Australia transitions to a low-carbon future.”

The network battery will also participate in AGL’s Virtual Power Plant, where customers join a network of connected distributed energy resources that support the electricity system when needed.

The trial will help AGL better understand the role of network batteries in enabling greater renewable energy into the grid.

Essential Energy’s Chief Executive Officer, John Cleland, said, “Our first grid-scale battery trial will provide learnings that will lead to further deployment of the technology across Essential Energy’s footprint, supporting the energy transition of regional, rural and remote New South Wales.

“We’re proud to partner with AGL whose extensive technological capability enables us to proceed with these solutions under the regulatory framework and deliver effective network solutions to the local community.”

As announced in September 2022, AGL is committed to rapidly decarbonising its business supporting the transition to a lower carbon world aligned with the Paris Agreement.

AGL’s Climate Transition Action Plan outlines AGL’s ambition to install 12GW of new renewable and firming projects by 2036 and exit all coal fired generation by the end of June 2035.