Australia & New Zealand Business Report 2017

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Discovery Reports

Two superpowers come together for better access to clean energy

State Power Investment Corp has acquired Pacific Hydro with aspirations to grant better access to cleaner and cheaper energy in China and across Asia-Pacific

PUBLISHED : Friday, 22 September, 2017, 5:15pm
UPDATED : Friday, 22 September, 2017, 5:15pm

As detailed in its 13th five-year plan, China is increasingly transitioning from carbon-based power generation to renewable energy. China has bolstered its renewable energy initiatives, even projecting 210 gigawatts (GW) wind and 110GW solar installed capacity by 2020. One of China’s leading power generators, State Power Investment Corp (SPIC), acquired Australian firm Pacific Hydro last year for its high-quality and diversified portfolio that can be instrumental in granting better access to cleaner and cheaper energy in China and across Asia-Pacific.

“SPIC has clear aspirations for growth in the Pacific Rim. In the 14 months since Pacific Hydro was purchased, it has already committed to over 30 per cent growth,” says Pacific Hydro CEO Michael Fuge.

Taralga Wind Farm in New South Wales was acquired within the first 100 days of SPIC ownership; and Pacific Hydro’s 1.7GW development pipeline has been reinvigorated, with construction commenced on Yaloak South Wind Farm in Australia and Punta Sierra Wind Farm in Chile.

Pacific Hydro works ceaselessly to build an impressive portfolio, now operating 20 assets with an installed capacity of 850 megawatts (MW) across Australia, Chile and Brazil. Pacific Hydro has approximately a 40:60 hydro to wind power ratio, but the company is gradually expanding its capacity to include solar power — an area where SPIC’s expertise is particularly strong, registering a total of 7118.4MW solar capacity by the end of last year. With SPIC’s photovoltaic cell manufacturing capability, it can be expected that Pacific Hydro will be successful in its solar power expansion.

An application for permission to construct the company’s first photovoltaic power station, Haughton Solar Farm, was lodged with Burdekin Shire Council and a permit for the site was granted in June this year. Once completed, Haughton Solar Farm has potential to generate up to 500MW annually to power the equivalent of approximately 170,000 houses.

Buoyed by stakeholders and investors, Pacific Hydro is bullish about growth opportunities and welcomes additional partnerships with entities that want to participate in the exciting developments in the renewable energy sector.