Transgrid has recently published a Project Specification Consultation Report (PSCR) for increasing capacity for generation in the Molong and Parkes area of Central West NSW.
The Molong and Parkes area has seen significant growth in renewable generation connections to the transmission network, as part of the wider energy market transition. New renewable generators have connected or are planning to connect to the network west of our Molong 132/66 kV substation. Twelve solar and wind generation farms in the area with a combined output of 1135 MW are already in service, with a further 323 MW of generation committed or in advanced stage.
132 kV Line 94T (Molong – Orange North) plays a central role in transmitting the electricity from these renewable generators in the Molong and Parkes area to the load in Orange. It connects Molong substation to Orange North switching station, which in turn supplies Orange city, Cadia Mine and surrounding areas.
The existing rating of the Line 94T (Molong – Orange North) is constraining renewable generation in the Molong and Parkes area. AEMO’s monthly constraint reports since September 2021 have consistently identified Line 94T as a top 10 constraint on the National Electricity Market (NEM). Network modelling shows thermal overloading of Line 94T is expected under normal system conditions with the current level of in-service and committed generation dispatched to their maximum capacities.
We have identified the opportunity to increase overall net market benefits in the NEM by improving capacity and relieving existing constraints on renewable generation in the Molong and Parkes area. Consequently, we consider this a ‘market benefits’ driven RIT-T and expect the preferred option to have positive net market benefits.
Transgrid welcomes written submissions on materials contained in this PSCR. Submissions are particularly sought on the credible options presented and from potential proponents of non-network options that could meet the technical requirements set out in this PSCR. Submissions are due on 26 October 2022.
In accordance with the requirements of the National Electricity Rules, a summary of the PSCR is made available on the AEMO website. A copy of the PSCR can be obtained from Transgrid’s website or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org