Australia’s largest hybrid renewable microgrid takes top honours at international awards

Global distributed energy producer EDL’s Agnew Hybrid Renewable Project in Western Australia has edged out competition from around the world to be named Engineering Solution of the Year at the 2020 Global Energy Awards.

The ground-breaking 56MW microgrid at Gold Fields’ Agnew gold mine incorporating wind, solar and thermal generation and battery storage has recently chalked up wins at the 2020 Asian Power Awards (Innovative Power Technology of the Year – Australia) and 2020 Australian Engineering Excellence Awards (WA Division).

Global Energy Awards judges praised the project’s advanced microgrid, which achieves 99.99% reliability thanks to battery stabilization, and complimented EDL’s “remarkable accomplishment” thanks to its large scale and “hybrid approach.”

EDL CEO James Harman said the company was honoured to be recognised for its innovative approach to delivering reliable, renewable energy for remote, off-grid industrial operations.

“Congratulations must also go to our customer, Gold Fields—their vision to be a leader in sustainable gold mining inspired EDL and our suppliers to explore the boundaries of existing technologies, resulting in this remarkable hybrid renewable energy system,” said Mr Harman.

“The microgrid has surpassed EDL’s target of providing Gold Fields with energy that is more than 50% from renewable sources, with 99.99% reliability—a 50% renewable energy fraction abates 46,400 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, equivalent to taking 12,700 cars off the road each year.”

Gold Fields Australia Executive Vice-President Stuart Mathews says the Agnew hybrid renewable microgrid reflects the company’s strategic objective to strengthen energy security, optimise energy costs and reduce its carbon footprint through innovation and the adoption of new technologies.

“This is a significant project for Gold Fields, EDL, and the broader mining industry, and we are honoured to see this recognised by this award. We are proud to showcase this project with EDL as an outstanding example of the capacity of the hybrid renewable energy model to meet the dynamic power requirements of remote mining operations.”

The Agnew Hybrid Renewable Project’s demonstrated success in facilitating high renewable energy penetration without compromising reliability or quality, while reducing the remote mine’s exposure to fossil fuel prices and supply interruptions, paves the way for the global mining sector to transition to renewable energy.

EDL wins Engineering Solution of the Year
EDL wins Engineering Solution of the Year at the 2020 Global Energy Awards