The shipping news
The Northern Power Station, which once produced 520MW of power for South Australia, is now scrap metal bound for China
Friday, 13 October 2017
The 520MW Northern Power Station, near Port Augusta, South Australia, which was decommissioned in May last year after 32 years of service, has been reduced to scrap metal and is sitting on the dock at Port Pirie, bound for China.
The station, once Port Augusta’s biggest employer, was a victim of its own age and the state government’s increasing preference for wind and solar energy. The first of five shipments of the metal was loaded this week. The station relied on coal from the Leigh Creek coal mine, 280km north, which has also closed down with the loss of 250 jobs. SolarReserve is due to start building a solar plant next year, to be operating in 2020. Its maximum output will be 150MW.
“The Port Augusta story is a stark example of the transition of the South Australian economy, with the closure of a dirty coal-fired power station, and now the commissioning of this world-leading renewable energy project,” Premier described Jay Weatherill told The Advertiser.
The MRC’s contact in Port Pirie said the pile of metal had been dubbed “Mount Alinta” (above), after the power company that once owned it.