Community Battery Feasibility Study


Community Battery Initiative

As the transition to renewable energy is becoming more and more progressed, Geelong Sustainability is leading the charge in progressing community batteries for Greater Geelong.

Community Batteries, which are also sometimes referred to as ‘Neighbourhood Batteries’, are a type of battery storage for energy. These batteries are bigger than a home battery and can help to power a small neighbourhood.

Geelong Sustainability has been funded by the Victorian Government Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) to conduct a feasibility study around community batteries in the City of Greater Geelong region. This study results will help feed into potential future projects, funding, policies or structures for Community Batteries in this region.

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Geelong Sustainability has been working for many years to support the development of renewable sources of power in the Greater Geelong area. The group is keen to support the electrification of society and move away from the use of fossil fuels.

The group has actively been involved in projects that enable local residents and businesses to install roof top solar and distributed storage -  including the most recent Geelong Community Solar program where 1720 kW of Solar and 835 kWh of battery were installed across ~300 residential and commercial applications.

The large increase in rooftop solar is excellent news, but is beginning to impact the broader electricity grid. Day time solar peaks are having an impact on the poles, transformers and wires of the Powercor grid. There have been instances of rooftop PV installations in the Geelong area that are limited or denied the capability to export excess generation to the grid. This can have an impact on Feed In Tariffs (FiT) and the viability of a system.
The variability of PV Solar, the issues with the grid and the clear need to store that excess generation, (preferably locally to support the grid), has drawn the attention of the State Government. DELWPs Neighbourhood Battery Initiative  has issued a number of grants to study the concept and whether distributed storage and particularly Neighbourhood Batteries could be a solution. 
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Geelong Sustainability is working with DELWP, the City of Greater Geelong, ITP Renewables and Tango Energy to study how best to incorporate that distributed storage.

As part of the feasibility Geelong Sustainability has opened a Community Battery Survey for community members to have their say about Community Batteries. The group hopes the survey will gather the community’s interest, understanding, concerns and needs in regard to Community Batteries. 

Community Battery Webinar

Geelong Sustainability ran a free Community Battery Webinar on Tuesday 12th July from 7pm-8pm. 

Geelong Sustainability’s Mark Borroni shared the findings of the Community Batteries feasibility study conducted in the City of Greater Geelong region. He shared the outcomes, the benefits and challenges of such projects and insights for moving forwards. 

Hear the results from a community engagement survey exploring the communities interests, attitudes, concerns and barriers to battery storage, in particular Community Batteries.