Billionaire industrialist Gupta launches $1 billion renewables plan in South Australia

Billionaire UK industrialist Sanjeev Gupta has unveiled a US$1 billion renewable energy plan in South Australia, claiming that the 1GW project will lead to cheaper power across the state.

Earlier this week Gupta revealed details of the large-scale renewables plan, that will be delivered via his energy company Simec Zen, which includes a number of projects located in the upper Spencer Gulf region of South Australia.

The firm will build a lithium-ion battery bigger than Elon Musk’s 100MW Tesla Powerpack, also located in South Australia, along with a 280MW solar power site called Cultana Solar Farm.

“Today’s event is symbolic of our desire to develop and invest in new‐generation energy assets that will bring down Australia’s electricity prices to competitive levels again,” said Gupta at a site visit near Whyalla on Wednesday.

Other projects in the energy blueprint include expanded solar farms, a co-generation scheme to power Gupta’s Whyalla steelworks using waste gas and pumped hydro projects.

Gupta went on to discuss the role of fossil fuels in Australia’s future energy supply: “We have a strong conviction that traditional carbon‐intensive generation sources do not have a long‐term future as the predominant source of power in Australia and globally.

“We believe the world is undergoing a momentous transition to renewable power as the cost of renewables drops dramatically and quickly.”