The Eraring team has a number of projects currently on the go.
The team at Eraring regularly undertake significant projects to improve the operational performance of the power station and reduce its impact on the local environment and community.
Current projects include:
Origin will be conducting a major maintenance outage on Unit 4 at the Eraring Power Station to ensure the safe, flexible and reliable operations of the power station.
During the outage, which is expected to run from 19 August through to 21 October, we will be conducting inspections and repairs to the unit’s boilers, turbine and cooling water systems.
Typically, major maintenance outages of this nature occur every 4 years and this outage was deferred from 2020 to this year due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Origin has been working with external experts for several months to develop clear COVID-19 management plans and controls for this outage to ensure the safety of our staff, contractors and the community during this maintenance outage.
This extensive range of controls will apply to all personnel involved in the outage and include the following measures:
- Prior to attending site, all personnel will be required to return a negative PCR COVID test 72hrs before starting work.
- Upon arrival at site, all personnel will be required to complete a site COVID declaration prior to entry, while high interface workers will be required to complete Rapid Antigen testing prior to these scheduled work activities.
- During work activities, all personnel will need to wear masks at all times (inside and outside) and adhere to an extensive range of controls designed to limit group interactions and face-to-face contacts.
This important project is necessary to ensure full station availability before the commencement of the summer peak demand period.
In January 2021, Origin announced plans to progress the development of a major grid scale battery at Eraring.
This battery has a potential peak generation output of 700 MW. If it goes ahead it will be one of the largest battery projects (in terms of both peak power output and energy duration) in NSW and Australia.
- The battery can provide 700 MW of power for up to 4 hours, or lesser loads for longer periods (such as 200 MW over 14 hours).
- At peak output levels, the battery would meet the energy needs of approximately 150,000 homes for up to 4 hours.
Delivering high loads quickly when intermittent renewable energy sources are not available will help meet NSW demand and provide grid security.
Locating the battery at Eraring takes advantage of the existing transmission and grid connection infrastructure. This means there’s no need for construction of additional lines or procurement of easements.
Battery project status
An Eraring Battery Energy Storage System Scoping Report has now been lodged with the NSW Department of Planning. This report provides a detailed description of the project that helps the NSW Department of Planning and other referral agencies determine what’s required in the subsequent Environmental Impact Statement.
Keeping you informed
Origin is committed to keeping the local community informed as this project progresses. We’ll regularly update this site as key milestones are met.
In 2019, the team at Eraring conducted a flexible operations trial program to better understand how to align Eraring’s generation units with future changes in demand. These trials have provided insights into how best to improve Eraring’s flexibility to support the continued growth in renewable generation, while ensuring safe and efficient operations.
During 2019, Origin deployed an Australian-first digital tool to optimise Eraring’s performance. The Real-Time Optimisation project involved the installation of an Artificial Intelligence software application that removed the need to undertake manual calculations to identify efficiency improvements.
This project has already helped Eraring use less coal for the same MW, which means an overall reduction in emissions. This project aims to reduce the Station’s CO2 emissions by 1 million tonnes by 2025.
In response to Origin’s ash dam engineering reviews, the NSW Minister for Sport engaged the NSW Dams Safety Committee to conduct an independent review of these technical reports.
At the conclusion of this review, the NSW Government took the decision to permanently close the Myuna Bay Sport and Recreation Centre due to the risk posed by the potential failure of Eraring power station’s ash dam wall.
Origin has committed to support the establishment of a new facility and a preferred site on Origin owned land on the shores of Lake Eraring has been identified.
The new centre’s design concept will be made available for consultation and discussion with the community, with construction of the new centre planned for completion by mid-2023.
On 23 December 2019, the NSW Independent Planning Commission approved Origin’s application to modify an earlier major project approval (MP 07_0084) for the Eraring Ash Dam.
The approved modification application enables Origin to:
- extend the ash dam placement area
- relocate ancillary infrastructure
- modify storm water management system on the western side of the Ash Dam
This expansion will have no material impact on the stability of the ash dam wall as the works will be occurring 600 metres from the main embankment.
More information is available at the NSW Government’s Department of Planning, Industry and Environment project portal website and on our Documents and Resources page.
Community Consultative Committee (CCC)
There were several approval conditions set down by the Independent Planning Commission, including the establishment of a Community Consultative Committee that will comprise of:
- an independent chairperson
- up to 7 community and stakeholder representatives
- a Council representative
- up to 3 representatives from Origin