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Australia’s energy market is rapidly changing and Tasmania has a key role to play in this transformation. Coal generation is retiring, and new sources of renewable energy like wind and solar are becoming more plentiful. But they are variable so energy storage is needed to help fill the gaps and maintain the reliability and stability of our electricity supply. That’s where Tasmania can help!
Lake Cethana and Lake Rowallan and Tribute pumped hydro opportunities stacked up as the most promising in Hydro Tasmania’s studies, and work has now begun on a full feasibility assessment to find the first site that could be developed. The study will involve community engagement, geotechnical investigations and environmental, heritage and social assessments.
Hydro Tasmania has now started the geotechnical and geological investigations in the Mersey-Forth area, with preparatory work commencing on land adjacent to Lake Cethana and Lake Rowallan (on the western side at both locations). Geotechnical drilling is expected to commence in early October and will be followed by other site investigations activities including test pitting and augering. The geotechnical work is expected to continue until December 2019.
The data gathered provides information on what the ground conditions will be like both at the surface and at depth. The work will be done at locations where some of the major pumped hydro infrastructure might go – the intake from the lake, the water tunnels, the power station and the new upper water storage.