Repowering Port Augusta

Beyond Zero Emissions identified South Australia’s Port Augusta as ideal for a solar thermal power plant… and now it’s happening.

In 2010 Beyond Zero Emissions identified Port Augusta as the ideal place to build a solar thermal power plant – the first in a network of plants around Australia, as recommended in our Stationary Energy Plan – this plan shows in detail how Australia could transition to 100% renewable energy.

Why Port Augusta? The town’s coal-fired power station was due to close, taking with it an important source of electricity as well as local jobs. The Repowering Port Augusta Report in 2012 showed how to replace the two coal power plants with concentrated solar power.

We promoted the report with local people and politicians, including every member of the South Australian Parliament, The local community got behind our plan and formed Repower Port Augusta Alliance to campaign to bring solar thermal power to their town.

After several years of hard work this campaign was successful: in 2017 the South Australian Government announced a 150 MW solar thermal power plant would be built in Port Augusta, with Premier Jay Weatherill awarding the $650 million contract to Solar Reserve. Construction begins in 2019.

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BEYOND ZERO EMISSIONS

Beyond Zero Emissions (BZE) is an internationally recognised climate change think tank, providing independent and ambitious climate change solutions for Australia.

Our flagship research shows how all sectors of the Australian economy can decarbonise, repower and benefit from the transition to zero emissions. These Zero Carbon Australia plans cover renewable energy and electricity; energy efficient buildings; sustainable transport; agriculture, farming and land use; and industry.

Through volunteer-powered research we show that a thriving, zero emissions society is achievable and affordable now, and that Australia can become a renewable energy superpower.