A slow 1H for utility PV and wind projects in Australia

August 2020


A slow 1H for utility PV and wind projects in Australia


August 13, 2020
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The first half of 2020 has certainly been a wild ride for the Australian renewables market, which faced raging bushfires, a global pandemic and a logjam of 1.5 GWAC of new wind and PV assets connecting to the grid, leading to deflated wholesale prices and severe connection delays. As a result, new utility PV and wind additions fell to the lowest level seen over any six-month period since 2016. Moving into the second half of the year, it remains difficult for advanced projects to reach financial close.

Developers heading back to Queensland in 1H 2020

Queensland has been the location of choice for newly proposed Australian renewable projects in 2020. Of the 28.4 GWAC of newly proposed Australia projects in 1H 2020, 17.3 GWAC (61%) was located in Queensland. The state attracted all forms of technology (PV, Wind, H2 and storage), with developers located around Gladstone and West of Brisbane. The most significant exception was the Urannah Renewable Energy Hub, which consists of 3.5 GWAC of combined PV, wind, pumped hydro and an H2 electrolyser located North of Mackay. New South Wales was the second hottest location for development, with 5.8 GWAC of new projects proposed. The majority of these projects are located in the Central West and in New England. In 2019, the majority of new capacity was attributed to storage and utility PV. The first half of 2020 has seen 24 new onshore wind farms proposed in Australia with a total capacity of 8.9 GWAC. The majority of this capacity is located in Queensland (50%) and New South Wales (29%).

Iberdrola bids to extend portfolio with Infigen Energy  

Iberdrola might be on the cusp of a growth spurt. The company recently made a formal takeover offer to Infigen Energy, one of Australia’s biggest renewable developers. If completed, the deal will add 695 MWAC of producing utility-scale renewable assets to Iberdrola’s Australian portfolio, as well as a development pipeline of 1.2 GWAC. The deal would bring the company’s global capacity to 20.6 GWAC of operating solar PV, wind and storage with a 17.3 GWAC development pipeline. Operating across 13 countries, Iberdrola is one of the top renewable companies in the world.