Manufacturing News

Battery manufacturing facility to boost QLD energy potential

renewable energy

Energy Storage Industries – Asia Pacific (ESI), an Australian-owned renewable energy company, has broken ground on a new $70 million battery manufacturing centre in Maryborough, Queensland.

The facility is part of a series of developments with the potential to provide 20 per cent of Australia’s renewable energy storage needs and employ up to 500 highly-skilled workers across regional Queensland.

ESI director Stuart Parry said the project would deliver significant social and economic benefits to regional communities while helping to support the state’s renewable energy targets through the production of low-cost, environmentally friendly batteries for large-scale energy storage.

“We expect this Maryborough centre to be operational by 2024 and by 2026 expect to be in a position to deliver 400 megawatts of energy storage each year,” Parry said.

Parry also outlined his company’s ‘plans to expand’ operations, with ESI already assessing locations for a second Queensland facility, most likely in either Townsville or Gladstone.

The design of the battery allows ESI to procure up to 80 per cent of the battery components in regional Queensland, starting with the mineral-rich Wide Bay Burnett region. The region has a wind farm in the pipeline, which will bring many opportunities for a local and circular energy economy.

ESI chose to base its operations in Queensland because of the state’s approach to energy transition, state-owned transmission and distribution networks, and proximity to the Pacific and South East Asian markets.

The Department of State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning’s Fraser Coast and Gympie and North Queensland regional offices liaised closely with ESI to develop their projects.

This included facilitation of the purchase of land, making introductions to manufacturing and training networks, linking potential supply chain partners, and fostering a relationship with the National Battery Testing Centre (NBTC) in Brisbane.

Along with ESI’s developments in regional Queensland, battery energy storage forms a key component of the state’s renewable energy target of 50 per cent by 2030.

Energy from renewable sources such as solar and wind is not necessarily constant, which is why long-duration battery energy storage is crucial to the integration of renewables into Australia’s energy supply system.

13 large-scale battery systems have been proposed by government-owned energy businesses in the most recent state budget, along with $15 million to scale up the National Battery Testing Centre in Brisbane and $5 million to finalise and release a Queensland Battery Strategy, due later this year.

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