Categories
Community Energy News

CS Energy Employee Profile: Andrew Broadbent

Andrew Broadbent on working in CS Energy’s Future Energy division 

Andrew joined CS Energy in 2016 and has since worked in a range of finance and strategy roles throughout the business.  

The Senior Strategy Analyst is excited to be moving into the Future Energy division on a six-month secondment to support CS Energy’s pipeline of future energy initiatives. It’s a natural progression for Andrew after his most recent role was analysing the impact of energy market and policy trends on the business.  

When asked about what he’s most looking forward to in the new role, Andrew says, “there’s a lot of activity across the division and I’m keen to be an extra pair of hands and putting the company’s Strategic Priority to ‘Deliver Future Energy’ into action. 

“I’m also excited to leverage the strategic experience from my previous role to help engage and excite our people about CS Energy’s journey in becoming a diversified energy business.” 

Andrew will be progressing current and emerging business opportunities and working closely with the Policy and Regulation team to assist with CS Energy’s responses to various submissions as the policy framework evolves with the energy transition. 

He says he looks forward to deepening his knowledge about, and keep on top of changes happening in, the energy landscape, particularly as the momentum and pace of the energy transition gains pace. 

When talking about the impact of market trends he says, “there is so much activity occurring in the energy landscape, which has a broad scope and is incredibly interrelated. The traditional energy value chain of generation ️to transmission to retailing has become scrambled as the energy transition continues to unfold. 

“For example, the rapid uptake of rooftop solar has given rise to the ‘Prosumer’ where customers are both a producer and consumer of energy, increasing customer engagement in their energy procurement while creating a two-way flow of electrons. Therefore, anticipating or predicting what could have the biggest impact is challenging as the pace that technology is deployed directly relates to how fast costs decline.” 

Andrew says what he finds most interesting about the energy sector is how despite the fact that energy is an essential service, not everyone inherently understands the complexity and processes behind being able to turn on a light switch at home.  

Learn more about how CS Energy is responding to Australia’s energy transformation: https://www.csenergy.com.au/who-we-are/our-strategy  

Categories
Energy News

Multi-national Research Project to Boost Hydrogen Potential

Hydrogen offers exciting benefits to future energy use for powering heavy transport, as well as its potential to store energy.

Now, thanks to a multi-national research and development partnership, renewable energy from CS Energy’s Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant in Queensland is set to be used in an innovative pilot to explore the benefits of hydrogen in fuel cells and marine vessels.

Now, thanks to a multi-national research and development partnership, renewable energy from CS Energy’s Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant in Queensland is set to be used in an innovative pilot to explore the benefits of hydrogen in fuel cells and marine vessels.

The project is being supported by Japan’s Ministry of the Environment and will assess the potential of renewable hydrogen for use in fuel cells and marine vessels in Palau to reduce that country’s reliance on fossil fuels.

Renewable hydrogen for the project will be supplied from CS Energy’s Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant, which will be built on the Western Downs and produce renewable hydrogen from behind-the-meter solar energy.

CS Energy CEO Andrew Bills said CS Energy was delighted to welcome Sojitz as the first off- taker for the Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant and was proud to help Palau achieve its carbon reduction ambitions.

Mr Bills said, “We’re excited to collaborate with Sojitz as they seek to find creative solutions to the energy challenges faced by our Pacific near neighbours and which have potential for application to island communities in Queensland.

“The capability building and knowledge sharing opportunities for our people is enormous and we look forward to working with Sojitz and their project partners.

“CS Energy is also well advanced in discussions with potential off-takers for the Kogan project from the heavy transport sector on the Western Downs and we continue to strive to find new opportunities and creative solutions for Queensland’s energy future,” Mr Bills said

The Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant is a hydrogen production facility that will be built next to CS Energy’s Kogan Creek Power Station.

The project will include the co-location of a solar farm, battery, hydrogen electrolyser, hydrogen fuel cell, storage and out loading facility.

The demonstration plant’s hydrogen electrolyser will only be powered by behind-the-meter solar energy, making it one of the few truly renewable hydrogen projects in Australia.

The aim of the project is to produce renewable hydrogen and provide energy and other grid services while gaining expertise from an operational hydrogen project from production, storage, transport and handling.

Construction is expected to commence in 2022 and commissioning in early 2023.

Learn more here

 

Categories
Community Energy News

CS Energy Employee Profile: Stephen Hoult

Charged up for the future: Affordability and choice will accelerate the energy shift

CS Energy’s Principal Consultant Commercial & Future Energy, Stephen Hoult, discusses how renewable energy solutions are supporting lower power prices for consumers and creating increased choice into the future.

The speed with which the world is transitioning to cleaner energy has surprised even industry experts like Stephen Hoult.

New technologies, such as electric vehicles, are growing in popularity, and as affordability and choice improves, individual consumers and corporates are shifting gear to an electric future, Stephen says.

“More and more organisations are dipping their toes in the water to become familiar with electric vehicle (EV) technology.

“Government fleet customers, in particular, have been early adopters when it comes to adding  EVs to their fleets, facilitating investment in both vehicles and infrastructure throughout their portfolios including at TAFEs and hospitals.

“As EVs become more affordable and the range of vehicles increases, the transition will gain pace both at the consumer and corporate levels.”

Stephen with CS Energy’s EV Hyundai Kona.
Stephen with CS Energy’s EV Hyundai Kona.

CS Energy offers EV charging infrastructure for large commercial and industrial customers in Queensland. The move into EV charging is part of CS Energy’s strategy to become a diversified energy company, with renewable energy offtakes and a green hydrogen demonstration project part of its shift to customer-focused energy solutions.

Stephen has been part of the CS Energy team for more than 10 years, working in energy trading, policy, and regulatory leadership roles before joining the Future Energy team.

“I have always had a strong interest in everything to do with the electricity industry and power generation, and CS Energy is the perfect place to work because it has generation assets, projects, and a stimulating work environment.”

Stephen sees the role of Future Energy as key to Queensland transitioning to a more sustainable future, while still providing safe, reliable, and affordable energy for today’s consumers.

“Customers are increasingly wanting renewable energy sources included in the electricity supply products we offer. Modern energy providers must be innovative and nimble to design and tailor products that suit these customer requirements.

“It’s exciting that the company is investing in these progressive, future-looking projects and I am proud to be a part of it.”

Learn more about CS Energy’s renewable energy offerings to customers here or follow CS Energy on LinkedIn

Categories
Community Energy News

CS Energy Employee Profile: Brooks Mustey

Creating energy solutions for every business challenge

 

As Head of Future Energy at CS Energy, Brooks Mustey understands that every business has unique energy requirements.

“More and more large energy users are wanting to decarbonise their operations,” Brooks said. “But they are often trying to achieve this against a backdrop of challenges specific to their business.”

Brooks Mustey profile picture
Head of Future Energy Brooks Mustey at Kennedy Energy Park in Far North Queensland. CS Energy has an offtake agreement for 100 per cent of the output of the 60 MW hybrid renewable project.

With a background in procurement and experience across multiple industry sectors, Brooks thrives on problem-solving in a commercial environment.

“My focus is always to seek to understand first, and then develop a solution. Ultimately, we want to empower businesses to better manage their energy needs.”

Brooks joined CS Energy in 2019 after working in the resources, raw materials and energy sectors.

 

 

“CS Energy is a company in the midst of a transformation and this really appealed to me. Leveraging our existing operations and workforce while at the same time creating pathways to new products, assets, partnerships and technology to become a future-focused diversified energy business is really inspiring.”

In the last two years CS Energy has significantly grown its share of the large commercial and industrial retail market, and has invested in renewable energy offtakes, electric vehicle charging and renewable hydrogen.

“The pace of change in the past decade has been extraordinary, and it is really being driven by the community and by energy customers demanding energy that is not only reliable and affordable, but sustainable,” Brooks said.

“Our Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Project is a great example of this, where we are investing and partnering for the long-term in renewable energy sources to power our economy into the next century and beyond. We’re also exploring the potential of utility-scale batteries.

“It’s exciting to be at the forefront of this shift and to be part of a team that is genuinely focused on pursuing creative solutions.”

Brooks said a key priority as CS Energy transforms is upskilling its employees and building partnerships with specialist businesses and local communities. One example of this is the hydrogen skills mapping partnership with Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise.

“There is a great appetite for change, and CS Energy is taking a leading role as a Queensland Government owned business.”

Follow CS Energy on LinkedIn to learn more.

Categories
Community Energy News

CS Energy Employee Profile – Yatra Forudi

Navigating an industry transformation with a clear strategy

CS Energy’s Head of Strategy and Planning Yatra Forudi is optimistic about the future, and the role that young people keen to work in the industry will play in responding to the challenges of climate change and a decarbonised global economy.

Yatra’s role in Strategy and Planning involves understanding where energy markets are headed and determining CS Energy’s strategic response to those fast-paced changes. Yatra believes that for young people considering their career options, the sector provides enormous opportunity to drive meaningful change towards a cleaner future.

“Utilities in the 2020s and beyond will be a fast-paced sector, as the energy sector decarbonises, led by customer requirements and digital advancement. A career in utilities provides the unique opportunity to experience this transformation first-hand and play a part in it, regardless of whether your role is technical, field or office-based ,” Yatra said.

Industry Transformation

Yatra admits people are often surprised when they hear about the innovation that companies like CS Energy are driving , and how advanced the sector is on its decarbonisation journey.

“Utilities, including companies like CS Energy, are innovating every day to provide essential services in a rapidly changing energy landscape. While I was familiar with this change, what surprised me was the fast pace at which utilities are continually adapting their day-to-day energy dispatch, maintenance and financial decisions in the face of a changing energy grid.”

“For those considering a career in the utilities sector, I would encourage them to think about where the sector is right now and importantly, where it is going to be in the next few years and beyond, and to become familiar with the many different pathways that can give you the flexibility to progress with the industry’s transition.”

Yatra is optimistic about the role CS Energy is playing in supporting the Queensland Government to transition towards a low carbon future.

“CS Energy has helped facilitate renewable energy development in Queensland through offtake agreements and we work to continuously improve our environmental management practices. We’re also an active member of our local communities, providing sponsorship to not-for-profits and support measures during COVID-19. ”

“CS Energy is committed to the Queensland Government’s energy transformation objectives, and I am excited to be part of this journey towards a more sustainable Queensland”.

Categories
Energy News

How big batteries soak up the sun

CS Energy’s Acting Executive General Manager Future Energy, Emma Roberts, discusses how evolutions in solar energy innovation is supporting lower power prices for consumers and a more stable power grid throughout the country.

With an abundance of sunshine, it’s no surprise that Australia has been at the forefront of solar energy innovation. In fact, our rate of adoption of rooftop solar technology is among the world’s highest.

But sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. In recent years, excess solar energy in the middle of the day has created challenges for the stability of Australia’s power grid.

Big batteries are seen as an enabling technology because they can store surplus solar energy for use at a later time. Batteries provide a ‘solar soak’ service to smooth out fluctuations in demand by charging during the day and discharging during the evening or when demand is high. This helps to lower power prices for consumers.

Battery energy storage systems work by using chemicals to absorb and release energy on demand. They are fast and flexible – the latest big batteries can turn off and on in fractions of a second.

Batteries’ ability to ramp up and down quickly also means they can provide important grid stabilisation services and reduce the need for new transmission infrastructure.

Battery technology is not new, but its commercial application at a large scale has taken off in Australia in recent years thanks to advances in technology and decreased production costs.

There are currently five grid-scale batteries operating in the National Electricity Market, with many more in the pipeline, including one at Wandoan in Queensland.

CS Energy is considering investing in big batteries to diversify our portfolio, help improve the stability of the power system and create better price outcomes for consumers.

Watch this space!

-END- 

Learn more about CS Energy’s renewable energy offerings to customers here or follow CS Energy on LinkedIn 

Categories
Energy News

Hydrogen set to do the heavy lifting on Aussie roads

Green hydrogen is a truly exciting opportunity for Queensland.

The technology holds great promise for a variety of industry sectors, not least because of the economics of its use compared to existing fuels.

Hydrogen has been heralded as a “future energy” source for industries that have traditionally presented a greater challenge when it comes to decarbonisation.

These industries include the heavy transport operators that move goods across our vast land and provide the vital connections to our cities and ports.

With Australia’s great distances and reliance on our truck fleet to move goods, it is no surprise that heavy transport – like electricity – represents a real opportunity for our nascent hydrogen industry.

According to recent studies, the use of hydrogen to fuel high utilisation heavy transport has the best potential to achieving cost parity compared to petroleum fuel sources currently in use.

In other words, the switch to hydrogen does not necessarily come with the same “cost of change” as other potential energy sources.

As a future-focused and diversified energy business and a leader in delivering new energy solutions, CS Energy is making significant investments into research and development of hydrogen and focussing on the domestic heavy transport and haulage market as a valuable opportunity for Australia.

Discussions are well advanced with multiple potential offtakers in the Queensland heavy transport sector, using the Kogan Renewable Hydrogen Demonstration Plant.

As part of our commitment to delivering the Energy of Tomorrow, CS Energy is also investigating technology and location options for modular hydrogen refuelling stations in the South East Queensland and Western Downs freight corridor.

Categories
Energy News

CS Energy employee profile – Selena Waterford

There’s never been a more exciting time to be in the Australian energy business, according to CS Energy Retail Account Manager, Selena Waterford.

In 2021 Selena joined CS Energy’s Retail Team, which provides tailored energy solutions for large organisations. She says customers are more aware than ever of the need for competitive, efficient and sustainable sources of power, and this is driving innovation and creativity in the energy industry.

“Business retail customers are becoming increasingly savvier and know what they want in a retail agreement,” Selena says.

“Gone are the days when price alone reigned supreme. Customers want a retailer who can align energy procurement alongside their corporate strategy goals of ‘Net Zero Emissions’ or 100% renewables. They also want a retailer who can provide exceptional customer service and takes the time to understand their business and needs.” 

Selena believes there is a huge opportunity for Australia to be a leader in the global transition to “energy of the future”, recognising it is a journey from traditional sources to more tailored sustainable and innovative solutions.

“It is interesting that customers are leading this transition, driven by their own shareholder and stakeholder expectations. I really enjoy talking to customers about their energy needs, and how they can incorporate renewable energy in ways that balance cost and reliability with a focus on sustainability.”

Selena is excited about the future, and the opportunity to be part of a global shift towards renewable energy.

“The energy industry is continually evolving and that is what makes it exciting for me. While no one knows for sure what the energy landscape will look like in a decade’s time, it will surely involve a greater mix of renewables as Australia transitions to using more renewable energy.

“Being a part of this shift and helping retail customers achieve their sustainability goals by thinking outside the box is both challenging and rewarding.”

Categories
Energy News

Exploring the potential of green hydrogen

Emma Roberts is the Head of Future Energy at CSE. In this article she writes about the growth of hydrogen as a new energy source in Queensland.

Hydrogen is emerging as one of the most exciting prospects for meeting the world’s future energy needs.

Queensland has been recognised as an ideal location for renewable hydrogen projects because we have plenty of sunshine, a highly skilled workforce and well-established ports to export hydrogen overseas.

Both the Australian Government and various state governments have recognised the enormous potential of hydrogen with strategies and funding to expand the hydrogen industry.

Here in Queensland, we have Australia’s first dedicated Minister for hydrogen, with Mick de Brenni appointed as the state’s Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen in 2020. Mr de Brenni is also one of CS Energy’s shareholding Ministers.

As CS Energy works to diversify our portfolio, we have invested in two hydrogen projects to assess future commercial opportunities for the production and use of renewable hydrogen.

In 2019 we provided $500,000 towards QUT’s multi-party hydrogen R&D project at Redlands. Then in January of this year, we announced that we had partnered with IHI Corporation Japan to assess the feasibility of establishing a renewable hydrogen demonstration plant next to Kogan Creek Power Station.

It’s an exciting time to be working in the energy industry, but for people outside of the sector it can be confusing understanding why hydrogen is attracting so much attention and the difference between the various colours of hydrogen.

What is hydrogen and how is it used?

Hydrogen can be produced in liquid or gas form and is used around the world as a raw material for industrial processes. Hydrogen can also be used both as a fuel for transport and as a way to store electricity.

Hydrogen is also described in different colours: green, blue, grey and brown. These labels are based on how the hydrogen was produced. Brown hydrogen is made using coal, grey hydrogen uses gas and blue hydrogen is produced using gas and carbon capture and storage to reduce emissions.

At CS Energy, we’re interested in green hydrogen, which is produced using renewable energy.

The Kogan Hydrogen Demonstration Project

The proposed Kogan Hydrogen Demonstration Plant will use a combination of solar energy and batteries to power an electrolyser that will split water (H2O) into hydrogen.

While it will be located next to Kogan Creek Power Station, the demonstration plant’s hydrogen electrolyser will only be powered by behind-the-meter solar energy. This will make it one of the few truly ‘green hydrogen’ projects in Australia.

The project will not rely on the purchase of green certificates to ‘wash’ the hydrogen, which is a feature of many other hydrogen projects. We believe this a key differentiator as solar electrons will run the electrolyser, charge the battery, and where surplus, be dispatched into the National Electricity Market.

This graphic illustrates how the Kogan Hydrogen Demonstration Project would produce green hydrogen.

CS Energy is currently working with IHI Corporation on our joint feasibility study into the demonstration plant. We’re exploring the optimum technology configuration, doing detailed design and costing and assessing the availability of government funding.

Most importantly, we are investigating potential markets for the green hydrogen product in the transport, mining and industrial sectors.

Next steps

We expect to complete the feasibility study in the first half of this year. The decision to proceed with the demonstration plant will be at the discretion of the CS Energy Board and our owners the Queensland Government.

If the demonstration plant proceeds and is successful, it will provide the platform for modular expandability to a commercial-scale facility.

Categories
Energy News

Water management at Kogan Creek Power Station

Did you know that water is crucial in the process of generating electricity? We have a number of sustainable and efficient water management practices in place, including using a combination of recycled, raw and town water in our operations.

Kogan Creek Power Station, near Chinchilla on Queensland’s Western Downs, is our most water efficient plant.

Unlike many traditional coal-fired power stations, Kogan uses dry cooling technology, which uses 95% less water.

CS Energy employee walking on the top level of the air-cooled condenser
CS Energy employee walking on the top level of the air-cooled condenser

Kogan has an air-cooled condenser that uses large fans to cool and condense exhaust steam after it has left the turbine, so it can be reused again. The limited water the power station does use is sourced from local bores and surface water run-off that’s been collected in dams.

An onsite water clarification plant was introduced in 2016 and is used to recycle stormwater for use in plant operations. This has led to a 20% annual reduction in bore water use.  In instances where high quality water is required, Kogan Creek Power Station can treat additional sources of water for use in the boiler, or provide a back-up water source in the event of drought or a bore failure.