Munmorah Power Station

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Munmorah power station was a 1,200-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in New South Wales, Australia. The plant was shut down in 2012.

Location

The map below shows the location of the plant, near Doyalson, New South Wales.

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Background on Plant

Munmorah Power Station, owned by Delta Electricity, is on the New South Wales Central Coast of New South Wales. The station began operating in 1967 with full commissioning in 1969.[1]

The power station initially comprised four 350 MW units with a total installed capacity of 1,400 MW. The units at Munmorah were downgraded to 300 MW capability in 1984 and Units 1&2 were decommissioned in 1996. Units 3&4 remained in service. In mid-2009 Delta Electricity proposed to upgrade the two ageing units to their original 350MW rated capacity and extend their life for a further 20 years. [2]

Despite considering an upgrade for the 'intermediate' power station, a drop in demand forced the company to re-assess its plans. In August 2010 the power station was placed on a 'standby' basis but no power generated from it.[1]

The closure of units 3-4 was announced in July 2012. The company stated that "decreasing energy demand in NSW has created an excess supply situation. Munmorah’s place in the market has been overtaken by newer and more efficient generators and alternative electricity sources. The station’s ageing infrastructure and high maintenance costs mean that it is not economically viable to operate. The carbon tax further erodes its viability."[3]

Carbon capture project

In 2010, a carbon capture and storage (CCS) project at Delta Electricity's now mothballed Munmorah power station was set for expansion, after receiving US$28 million in funding. The project was moved to Vales Point Power Station in 2012, after Munmorah closed. However, a 2015 report from the state government's Coal Innovation Fund says the CCS project has now been terminated, due to the Commonwealth withdrawing funding as well as a lack of suitable storage options being available in the foreseeable future. The project aimed to store up to 100-thousand tonnes of CO2 annually.[4]

Citizen action against Munmorah

November 27, 2008: Australian student blockade

On Thursday 27 November, four people from the Australian Student Environment Network entered the Munmorah Power Station on the NSW Central Coast, attaching themselves to conveyor belts carrying coal. Twenty people staged a protest outside the power station. Spokesperson Ann-Marie Rohlfs said, "We are facing a climate emergency, but our emissions are still rising. We call on the Rudd Government to ensure 2010 is the year Australia's greenhouse emissions peak and begin to rapidly decline. This blockade at the Munmorah Power Station is part of a huge community effort to kick Australia's coal habit. As the oldest power station in NSW, Munmorah Power station must be the first to go in the new green economy." Four people were arrested.[5]

Plant Details

  • Sponsor: Delta Electricity
  • Parent company: Delta Electricity
  • Location: Doyalson, New South Wales, Australia
  • Coordinates: -33.2120806, 151.5422158 (exact)
  • Status: Units 1-2 Retired (1996); Units 3-4 Retired (2012)
  • Gross capacity: 1,200 MW (Units 1-4: 300 MW)
  • Type: Subcritical
  • In service: 1967-69
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source:
  • Source of financing:

Articles and Resources

Related SourceWatch Articles

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Munmorah Power Station", Delta Electricity website, accessed January 2009.
  2. Aurecon, "Preliminary Environmental Assessment – Munmorah Rehabilitation", Delta Electricity, June 2009, page ii.
  3. Delta Electricity, "Munmorah Power Station to close after 45 years of operation", Media Release, July 3, 2012.
  4. "Power station carbon capture and storage project terminated," abc.net.au, Aug 10, 2015
  5. Jessica Clement, "Oldest power station ‘must be closed’", Central Coast Express Advocate, November 27, 2008.

External Articles