But the push to ramp up renewable energy follows growing concerns about the grid’s ability to cope with a surge in variable wind and solar power, much of which is in western Victoria, a far cry from the aging and increasingly unreliable State’s Lignite Generators.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has determined that Victoria will face supply gaps as early as 2024 based on new and existing projects, with minimum reliability standards expected to be breached in Victoria from 2028 onwards.
D’Ambrosio said an order had been issued allowing the energy regulator to begin planning for the VNI West project immediately, including a detailed engineering design, costing and community consultation, with an environmental assessment due later this year to start a year earlier than expected.
AEMO chief executive Daniel Westerman recently warned that without a “social license” key power infrastructure may never be built.
“No one likes to feel like a railroad worker,” he said.
“If we… don’t get this right, infrastructure will be more expensive, take longer to build, and may never be completed.”
D’Ambrosio said AEMO will also consider alternative options to minimize the impact of the KerangLink project on regional communities, including the connection point with Victoria’s Western Renewables Link.
Ahead of last year’s state elections, the federal government announced that the Commonwealth’s Clean Energy Finance Corporation would provide a $750 million loan on concessional terms to help build the KerangLink interconnector.
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https://www.smh.com.au/national/victoria/green-light-for-keranglink-victoria-s-massive-renewable-energy-grid-upgrade-20230219-p5clos.html?ref=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_source=rss_national First works for the start of the massive modernization of the electricity grid for renewable energy in Victoria