Hon Bill Johnston MLA

Hon Bill Johnston MLA

Minister for Mines and Petroleum; Energy; Corrective Services; Industrial Relations

    Energy technology a boon for regional WA homes

    23/10/2020 6:30 AM
    • 52 stand-alone power systems installed and operating in regions
    • Largest single deployment by a network business in Australia 

    Energy Minister Bill Johnston has congratulated Western Power on the successful deployment of 52 stand-alone power systems (SPS) at properties throughout the Mid-West, Goldfields, eastern Wheatbelt and Great Southern regions.


    The final SPS unit commissioned in this roll-out, in Wansbrough, is a trial unit that will supply two customers - another Australian first.


    Stand-alone power systems are a more efficient option, than traditional poles and wires, to supplying electricity to households or businesses, and typically includes solar panels, a battery and back-up generator.


    The 52 units will replace around 230 kilometres of overhead powerlines, at an average of
    4.5 kilometres per property, all of which would have needed to be replaced at a significant cost. This also results in improved land amenity for farmers and reduced risks of collisions or bushfire.


    A SPS is part of Western Power's service area but operates independently to the main network.


    The 52 unit roll-out follows a successful pilot involving six stand-alone power systems in 2016; it exceeded expectations with customers avoiding over 200 hours of power interruptions over the three-year trial.


    Deploying stand-alone power systems has generated direct benefits for the State economy through supporting WA small businesses, and creating new jobs and training opportunities. The deployment beyond the trial phase was made possible by the McGowan Government's Electricity Industry Amendment Bill 2019, which passed earlier this year.


    Comments attributed to Energy Minister Bill Johnston:


    "Stand-alone power systems are a cost-effective and innovative approach to providing power to WA's regional customers.


    "Using SPS is part of the McGowan Government's commitment to providing reliable and safe power to our customers that are on the fringe of the grid.


    "We have made significant headway in transitioning towards a low carbon future with the recent release of the Whole of System Plan, DER Roadmap, the big battery and commissioning of SPS technology."


    Minister's office - 6552 6700