Nova going solar

INDEPENDENCE Group has commissioned power provider Zenith Energy to build a solar photovoltaic facility at the Nova nickel-copper-cobalt mine in Western Australia.
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Zenith's power plant at Nova

Staff reporter

Zenith built, owns and operates the existing Nova diesel power station but IGO has amended its power purchase agreement to incorporate the new facility.

The solar PV facility is expected to have a 12.5GWh annual yield and will take total generating capacity at Nova to 26MW.

Power supply from the facility is expected to start in the first quarter of the 2020 financial year.

The facility will be the first fully integrated commercial hybrid diesel/solar PV facility in Australia.

"This is another example of the strategic transformation IGO is undergoing to align our business with the global shift to more environmentally-friendly options including renewable energy, battery and clean energy storage technology," IGO managing director Peter Bradford said.

"IGO's strategy is to become a globally relevant, premium producer of energy storage and distribution minerals. That means walking the talk on how we implement more sustainable mining practices and use innovative technologies within our own business to demonstrate our commitment to making a difference for future generations."

The development of this innovative hybrid energy solution will improve Nova's cost structure as IGO targets renewable power insertion of up to 50% of demand via the solar PV facility.

The amended contract with Zenith has an initial supply period of six years with an option to extend for a further two years.

Zenith said the completion of the facility would positive impact its earnings.

IGO shares opened 0.1% higher at A$4.295, while Zenith rose by 2% to 77c.