Major beef producer and exporter, Teys Australia, has unveiled a new plan to make one of its New South Wales facilities completely energy self sufficient using a range of technologies including solar, storage, solid waste digestion and biomass boilers.
Teys, which last year used a combination of solar and energy efficiency to halve the grid power consumption of its 30,000 head commercial feedlot in Queensland’s Darling Downs, announced the $42 million plans for its Wagga processing plant late last week.
It said the new low emissions energy hub (LEEH) at the Wagga facility would meet all of its energy needs, including both electrical and thermal energy, and reduce its draw from the grid, particularly during peak periods.
“The hub will include baseload bio-generation, solid waste digestion, solar PV, energy storage and biomass boilers to produce steam,” said Teys chief supply chain officer, Tom Maguire.
“Together these technologies will provide stable baseload power that integrates with the grid, improving energy security, and reducing emissions.”
As well as cutting costs at the Wagga plant– which, for water and energy reached around $2 million in the last financial year – Maguire said the hub would also benefit local farms, which could increase their income by supplying farming waste to Teys for use in energy generation.
“The LEEH will give us a competitive edge for a business that contributes $512 million to the regional economy and supports 4000 direct and indirect jobs.”
Teys would fund half the hub’s cost and would apply to government for the other half, he said.
“Teys will continue to invest in sustainability measures, not just because it’s great for the environment but also a perfect fit for our business.”
As noted above, this is the second major investment in renewable energy generation and energy efficiency measures by the major agribusiness, with last year’s Queensland measures expected to save the company upwards of $77,000 a year.
The energy overhaul at the Darling Downs commercial feedlot, located near near Condamine, was conducted as part of the Queensland government-funded Energy Savers Program – a collaboration between regional grid operator Ergon Energy and the Queensland Farmers Federation, to cut energy costs for the state’s agribusiness sector.
The Queensland job was undertaken after a detailed energy audit by Energetics, with the 300kW roof and ground-mounted PV system installed by Solgen and ERM Power.
Teys has not said who it will be working with on the Wagga project, although One Step is seeking more information. Updates to follow.