SA could be home to Australia’s first straw-fuelled power plant, planned to be situated near Ardrossan on the Yorke Peninsula.
It’s estimated that the straw-fuelled generator will produce 15MW of power, while also giving a new income stream for farmers.
Yorke Biomass Energy has identified 10 possible locations for new plants once the demonstration project is complete. They plan to replicate the project in remote and off grid locations, particularly where crop farming and mining projects are located.
SA Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said the SA Government is supporting the development of a diverse range of renewables projects to add competition to the grid and drive down energy prices.
“This is new technology that would not only be an Australian first but could create hundreds of new jobs in regional South Australia as Yorke Biomass Energy seek to roll out as many as 10 straw-fuelled power stations across the State,” he said.
Yorke Biomass Energy Chairman Terry Kallis said the funding grant will enable the company to take some big steps forward.
“We believe straw-fuelled power generation can play an important role in Australia’s energy mix. It can help reduce the cost of electricity and create new economic benefits to local rural communities, as well as helping resolve issues between mining and agricultural pursuits in a win-win manner,” he said.
“There are also significant environmental benefits on offer, such as improvements to sustainable local farming in terms of soil health, crop rotation and weed management, in addition to reduced greenhouse gases and improved energy security.”