Approval Granted for $29 Million Sustainable Energy Hub at Lake in New South Wales

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Australian tech firm Graphite Energy has been granted the green light for a $29 million Sustainable Energy Hub project at Lake Cargelligo in Central West New South Wales. This development signifies the initial phase of their Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct.

Graphite Energy specializes in a unique thermal energy storage system aimed at reducing carbon emissions in industrial and manufacturing processes. The expansion at Lake Cargelligo will include a new research and manufacturing building, where they will develop and assess systems for the Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct.

This represents a joint venture involving Graphite Energy, Cygnus Ag, and various participants from industry, research, and government. The initiative’s objective is to illustrate the harmonious coexistence of renewable energy and agriculture by leveraging technological advancements to facilitate clean energy generation without sacrificing agricultural land.

The masterplan for the Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct encompasses a 5MW solar photovoltaic array, complemented by a range of integrated energy storage solutions. These include battery energy storage, thermal energy storage for heating, cooling, and drying purposes, as well as hydrogen energy storage for electricity generation and reducing dependence on diesel fuel.

Completion date for the $29 Million Sustainable Energy Hub

The Initial phase of this expansion is scheduled to begin in late 2023, and its completion is targeted for mid-2024. This development builds upon Graphite Energy’s preexisting facility located at Lake Cargelligo, positioned nearly at the geographical center of New South Wales, between Dubbo and Griffith. The precinct’s construction will occur incrementally, with multiple stages planned.

Once finished, the Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct will produce renewable energy to support sustainable agricultural practices, establishing itself as a pioneering Australian prototype that can be expanded and duplicated both within the country and abroad.

The Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct is projected to reduce carbon emissions by an estimated 250,000 tCO2-e over its operational lifespan. Excess energy generated will be supplied to the grid, and agricultural waste streams will be repurposed into compost and fertilizers.

Graphite Energy’s CEO, Peter Lemmich, remarks, “In addition to supporting the local agricultural community in Lake Cargelligo, the Lake Sustainable Energy Precinct will serve as a trailblazer for the decarbonization of the broader agricultural sector, a challenging area in terms of emissions reduction. Our aspiration is for this to serve as a replicable model as we transition towards a lower carbon economy.”

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