Half of the energy will be generated by its first hybrid wind-solar farm in the world, and also the country’s most powerful: Port Augusta (320 MW).
The agreement will enable the polymetallic mine to reduce emissions derived from electricity consumption by 50% by 2025 and will contribute to Anglo-Australian multinational BHP’s goal of reducing its emissions by 30% by 2030.
Iberdrola has been selected by Anglo-Australian multinational BHP to supply 100% renewable energy to its Olympic Dam mine project, one of the world’s largest underground deposits of copper, gold and uranium, in southern Australia. The green energy supply will start operating in 2022 and will enable BHP to reduce the emissions from electrical consumption at Olympic by 50% by 2025, contributing to its overall goal to reduce scope 1 and 2 emissions by 30% by 2030.
The long-term purchase and sale agreement includes a specific PPA for the energy produced by Port Augusta, Iberdrola’s first hybrid wind-solar farm in the world and the largest in Australia, with 320 MW of installed power. Iberdrola is building the farm, which will supply around half the electricity required for Olympic Dam, in South Australia. The contract also includes an innovative mechanism whereby BHP will purchase Large-Scale Generation Certificates (LGCs) for 100% of the energy purchased until 2025.
Iberdrola Australia’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ross Rolfe, said that, “we are delighted with this alliance, which will help BHP to achieve its decarbonisation and sustainability targets. Together, we have designed this tailor-made renewable energy supply agreement, which will make Olympic Dam the main customer for the renewable energy produced by Port Augusta; evidence of both companies’ commitment to sustainable economic development in the region”.
Jennifer Purdie, asset president at BHP, said that, “this agreement cements our commitment to renewable development in South Australia. Copper production at Olympic Dam will support global decarbonisation and the energy transition as an essential product for manufacturing electric vehicle batteries and renewable infrastructure. Reducing emissions from our operations will further improve our position as a sustainable copper producer”.
South Australian Minister for Energy and Mining, Dan van Holst Pellekaan said that “the Government of Marshall is delighted with this agreement, which represents a step forward in South Australia’s journey towards cleaner, cheaper electricity for industry, businesses and homes. It proves that BHP, Iberdrola and other businesses that are obtaining a suitable mix of generation sources, including wind and solar farms to obtain cleaner, reliable electricity, are on the right track”.
The world's first hybrid wind-solar farm
Iberdrola has fully installed the wind farm on its first hybrid wind-solar farm in the world: Port August is in South Australia and consists of 50 wind turbines and 250,000 solar panels.
The renewable power plant – which cost 500 million Australian dollars – combines 210 MW of wind power with 107 MW of photovoltaic generation and once in operation within the next few months it will supply enough clean energy to supply the equivalent of 180,000 Australian homes per year.
The project, which created 200 jobs, has involved global, Australian and Spanish suppliers like Elecnor, Vestas, Longi and Sterling&Wilson, and is contributing to the establishment.