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June 30, 2017

South Australia Finds Hundreds of Potential Pumped Storage Sites

Researchers from the Australian National University (ANU) discovered hundreds of potential sites in South Australia that can be used for water storage development, which can support other renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power.

The ANU team found 185 areas in the state that could support a sustainable, safe and cheap electricity grid, according to the study’s lead researcher, Andrew Blakers. The study would further look into the viability of using the identified sites by conducting due diligence, which will be based on land ownership, engineering and environmental factors, among other criteria.

Global Support

Blakers said that pumped hydro energy storage is responsible for 97 per cent of the world’s energy storage. For instance, hydro storage development projects are indirectly essential for farm machinery in Australia, as well as other industries that greatly depend on water supplies for daily operations.

The study listed the potential sites outside national parks and urban areas. It received a funding grant from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency for the development of a nationwide atlas for identifying possible off-river hydro storage sites.

Urban Planning

When it comes to water policy, Perth has implemented an effective strategy for keeping a stable supply of drinking water. Local authorities in the city found a way to solve a dry spell on its dams and other reservoirs in the form of aquifers.

The city has increasingly relied on ground water due to the declining supply of rainfall in dams over the last several years. For instance, an ongoing project involves pumping recycled sewage into Perth’s aquifers as a way to boost drinking water supply. This and other initiatives allow the city to have an additional supply of 178 billion litres of water.

Hydro storage development projects are important, as the demand for electricity continues to grow worldwide. These initiatives will also help the environment by advancing other sources of renewable energy, such as wind and solar power.