Mar 21, 2019Gas & Renewables

The Australian Town Forging a Clean Energy Future

A pilot program in the Western Australian town of Onslow is proving that natural gas and renewable energy sources like solar power are perfect partners to provide secure and cleaner energy.

The Onslow Renewable Energy Pilot has progressed into stage two, with solar panels and battery storage systems having been integrated in what’s called a microgrid. Stage two of the project includes the build of a solar farm and network battery which means that, when in operation, the town will receive about half of its energy needs from renewable energy and the other half from natural gas.

Stage one of the project, completed in July of 2018, saw the completion of a gas-fired power station and related infrastructure.

Natural gas company, Chevron, which operates its Wheatstone project nearby, has made a substantial financial contribution to partner with the WA State Government for this project. Chevron has committed to investing $250 million in Onslow for critical infrastructure projects including a hospital, airport and recreational facilities. This essentially means the company is supplying natural gas to WA as well as renewable energy.

WA Minister for Energy, The Hon. Bill Johnston, said “The Onslow Renewable Energy Pilot is a landmark initiative that will help build a cleaner, brighter, renewable energy future”.


Image courtesy of Horizon Power

We all want to do our part in taking care of the planet. Renewable energy sources like solar and wind are helping us to do that more effectively. But what happens when energy from renewables isn’t enough? That’s where natural gas comes in. Natural gas provides a low carbon alternative to traditional fossil fuels and is the best solution we have to lowering household emissions in a cost-effective way.