Australia’s biggest aluminium smelter said last week it is ramping up its push to phase out carbon-emitting production by transitioning to the use of renewable energy.
According to local media, the drive to renewable power production and storage will be a priority by the end of the decade. Additionally, Tomago Aluminium will increase the pace of construction and development of the Hunter Renewable Energy Zone, which represents a capital investment of A$100 billion.
David Fallu, the Chairman of Tomago Aluminium, said that the firm will seek partners in long-term traceable renewable energy and sustainable power generation projects.
“The Company would lead in the state’s clean energy transition. Tomago Aluminium is NSW’s largest energy user and as such plays a pivotal role in shaping future renewable energy investment in the state.”
As the state’s biggest power user, Tomago Aluminium requires at least 950 megawatts of uninterrupted power. However, the interruptible load has the capacity to pull the rest of the national grid offline in short order.
Fallu sees great opportunity in the push for sustainable power production.
“This is a significant opportunity to collaborate and drive investment in competitive firmed renewable energy sources. We are committed to transitioning the business to a low carbon future, and this is a key step towards reaching that very important goal.”
Tomago Aluminium is optimistic that its position as a major industrial participant will greatly aid in switching itself over to renewable energy.
“Tomago Aluminium is well placed to collaborate with industry to lower the risk profile of delivering significant commercially viable renewable energy projects in addition to supporting network stability through the energy transition.”
Altogether, Tomago Aluminium estimates that it will require capex of A$3.9 billion plus another A$4 billion to build battery storage. The Hunter Energy Park’s coming Liddell power station site, the 700-mW Waratah Battery, and another 700-mW battery at Eraring Power Station are expected to be key players in the overall push to sustainable energy in the area.