Powerlink has recently published a 'Project Assessment Conclusions Report' (PACR) to maintain power transfer capability and reliability of supply at Ross Substation.
Ross Substation was first established in the 1983 and is an essential switching station for 275kV power transfer from central to north and far north Queensland, as well as the major injection point for the Townsville area distribution network. Three 275/132kV transformers provide the bulk supply of electricity to Townsville and the surrounding area via Powerlink substations at Townsville South, Millchester, Alan Sherriff, Dan Gleeson, Kidston and Yabulu South.
At over 35 years of age, much of the substation's primary plant is reaching the end of its technical service life and is no longer supported by the manufacturer, with few spares available.
The first step of the Regulatory Investment Test for Transmission (RIT-T) was the publication of the Project Specification Consultation Report (PSCR) in October 2018 which invited submissions particularly on the credible options which could address the identified need.
The proposed preferred option identified in the PSCR considered to satisfy the RIT-T involved the upfront replacement of all ageing and obsolete 275kV primary plant and selected 132kV equipment by October 2024. There were no submissions received in response to the PSCR which closed on 25 January 2019.
The outcomes of the economic analysis contained in the PACR remain unchanged from those published in the PSCR. Consequently, the draft recommendation to replace all ageing and obsolete 275kV primary plant and selected 132kV equipment by October 2024, has been adopted without change as the final recommendation in the PACR.
The estimated capital cost of the RIT-T project for the preferred option is $24.37 million in 2018/19 prices. Powerlink is the proponent of the proposed network project.
In the context of engagement activities with consumers and the general community, Powerlink has assessed this project as 'minor' on the RIT-T Stakeholder Engagement Matrix.
A copy of the Project Assessment Conclusions Report is available below.