Transgrid has recently published a Project Assessment Conclusions Report (PACR) for managing risk on Line 86 (Tamworth to Armidale) in Northern NSW.
Given the increasing rate of defect issues on Line 86’s wooden poles, Transgrid considers it is likely that all the structures on Line 86 are exhibiting various forms of decay, which is only expected to worsen over time. In addressing the condition issues on Line 86, an opportunity exists to provide extra capacity in this region of our network and, in doing so, address potential future constraints in the network and facilitate conditions that enable market benefits to be derived, associated with new generation and storage within the National Electricity Market.
The Project Assessment Draft Report (PADR) was released in May 2022. No submissions were received in response to the PADR during the consultation period which closed in July 2022 and no additional credible options have been identified.
The results of the PACR assessment find that a focused replacement of the highest risk Line 86 wood poles, like for like and in-situ with concrete or steel poles remains the preferred option for meeting the identified need. The PACR assessment shows that the additional costs of replacing Line 86 with either a higher capacity line or in combination with a VTL are not outweighed by the additional wholesale market benefits expected.
In accordance with the requirements of the National Electricity Rules, a summary of the PACR is made available on the AEMO website. A copy of the PACR can be obtained from Transgrid’s website or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.