Central-West Orana REZ Transmission

TransGrid is working with the NSW Government to plan new transmission infrastructure for Australia's first coordinated Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) in the State's Central-West Orana region.

What is a REZ? 

REZs are the modern day equivalent of traditional power stations. They combine renewable energy generation (such as wind and solar), energy storage (such as batteries and pumped hydro), and high-voltage structures and transmission lines to deliver energy to homes, businesses and industries that need it. 

By connecting multiple energy generators and storage at the same location, REZs capitalise on economies of scale and deliver affordable, reliable and clean electricity for NSW. 

What is the Central-West Orana REZ Transmission?

TransGrid is planning new 500kV and 330 kV transmission lines, substation(s) and related infrastructure to support the development of the Central-West Orana REZ. 

A study corridor is a broad area of investigation where the transmission lines and infrastructure could be located.  The project study corridor runs north-west from the existing 500kV network near Merriwa, passing south of Dunedoo before connecting to the existing network east of Wellington. The corridor also includes an option to extend further south to near Lake Burrendong. 

View the study corridor and submit feedback using this interactive map

TransGrid’s existing substation at Wollar will also be upgraded as part of the project.

Project funding is being received from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) as part of ARENA's Advancing Renewables Program. 

What are the project benefits?

  • Lower wholesale electricity costs – placing downward pressure on customer bills through increased competition
  • Improved reliability – by delivering large amounts of new energy supply
  • New local jobs – opportunities for local workers and businesses during construction
  • Reduced emissions and a greater mix of renewable energy in the National Electricity Market, supporting Australia’s transition to a lower carbon future. 

What is happening now?

The Central-West Orana REZ Transmission is in its early investigation stages. A route for the transmission lines has not yet been decided.

We are currently meeting and working with landowners and local communities to discuss constraints and opportunities within the study corridor, including carrying out environmental surveys to help with informing route identification. 

  • Landowner and community engagement

    Consulting with landowners and local communities is vital to the success of the Central-West Orana REZ. Landowner and community feedback helps us refine the study corridor and develop a route for the transmission lines that minimises impacts on local communities and the environment. 

    Throughout 2021, there will be many opportunities for landowners and communities to get involved and have their say on the project. We encourage you to:

    - Provide feedback about the study corridor and share information about your property and the local region via the interactive map

    - Attend community information sessions (dates, times and locations for information sessions will be advertised in local papers and on this website in advance)

    - Check this page for regular project updates and various project fact sheets.

    - Contact us via our project hotline 1800 313 212 (toll free number) or send us an email to cwo@transgrid.com.au.

    In December 2020 and February 2021 information about the project was mailed to landowners identified as being located within or near the study corridor and adjacent to Wollar Substation. 

    If you have a landholding within the study corridor and we haven’t spoken to you, we encourage you to book a COVID-safe on-property meeting. Please contact our project team to arrange a meeting via phone 1800 313 212 (toll free number) or email cwo@transgrid.com.au.

    Office of the Landowner and Community Advocate

    The Office of the Landowner and Community Advocate has been established within TransGrid to help us implement the best possible landowner and community engagement practices across all of our major transmission projects.

    The office is led by the former Commissioner for NSW Fair Trading, Rod Stowe, who as Landowner and Community Advocate has agreed to advise TransGrid on our engagement practices and processes.

    Mr Stowe’s advice will ensure we uphold best practice engagement and always treat everyone fairly and with respect.

    Find out more

  • Project approval

    An environmental assessment planning approval process is underway. This includes the preparation of a project Scoping Report (planned to be submitted in late 2021) and an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The EIS will cover the shared network infrastructure ((i.e. new transmission lines, new substation(s) and related infrastructure)) and will be placed on public exhibition in 2022. 

    A separate Scoping Report and EIS will be prepared for the upgrade works at Wollar substation. 

  • About the Central-West Orana REZ

    The Central-West Orana REZ will be the first REZ to be rolled out under the NSW Government’s Electricity Strategy and Electricity Infrastructure Investment Roadmap. The NSW Government will also develop REZs in the New England, South-West, Hunter-Central Coast and Illawarra regions of NSW. REZs will play a vital role in delivering affordable energy to help replace the State’s existing power stations as they are retired over the next 15 years.

    The Central-West Orana REZ is expected to:

    • Unlock at least 3,000 megawatts of new transmission capacity by the mid-2020s 
    • Attract up to $5.2 billion in private renewable energy investment into the Central-West Orana region 
    • Support around 3,900 construction jobs at its peak in the local region

    The NSW Government is leading the coordination and delivery of the Central-West Orana REZ, Australia’s first Renewable Energy Zone. In late 2020 the Government re-established a dedicated body, the Energy Corporation of NSW, to coordinate the development of electricity transmission, new generation (such as solar and wind) and energy storage projects (such as batteries and pumped hydro) within the REZ.

  • Online resources
  • Connect with us

    To contact the Central-West Orana REZ Transmission project team, phone 1800 313 212 (toll free number) or email cwo@transgrid.com.au 

    For further information about the Central-West Orana REZ, visit the NSW Government’s website www.energy.nsw.gov.au/renewable-energy-zones or contact the NSW Government via rez@planning.nsw.gov.au or call 1300 305 695.