APA, Australia’s leading energy infrastructure business, has announced a $60 million expansion of the South West Pipeline.
The expansion will involve installing an additional compressor facility at Winchelsea Compressor Station, which should increase the overall capacity in the Victorian Transmission System.
APA has made this final investment decision (FID) in light of the gas supply shortages that the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) forecasted in the 2022 Gas Statement of Opportunities (GSOO). The decision aligns with the company’s commitment to delivering reliable and responsible energy.
“As a leading provider of energy solutions for communities across Australia for over two decades, APA has a proud track record of supporting the Victorian Government in ensuring energy security for Victorian homes, business and industry,” Rob Wheals, the CEO and managing director of APA, said.
“The vast majority of residential gas customers in Victoria use gas to cook with and to heat their homes in winter. AEMO’s 2022 GSOO flagged potential gas shortfalls in Victoria from winter 2023 and suggested that in extreme conditions, this could result in demand curtailment, including asking households to voluntarily reduce their use of gas during forecast extreme peak day events.
“In response, APA has worked collaboratively with the Australian Energy Regulator and the Victorian Government to expedite augmentation of the South West Pipeline to provide further capacity, recognising the critical importance of natural gas to Victoria’s energy system. We anticipate this will be rolled into our asset base from 2023.”
The expansion project will commence immediately in order to ensure the compressor is in place before the predicted gas shortfalls.