Australia's largest coal-fired power station will shut down seven years earlier than planned, having become less profitable compared to cheaper wind and solar energy in the country.
Origin Energy, the plant's owner, said the 2.88-gigawatt Eraring power plant, located in the coal-rich Lake Macquarie region north of Sydney, would close in 2025 due to an 'influx of renewables.'
“Australia’s energy market today is very different to the one when Eraring was brought online in the early 1980s,” Origin Energy Chief Executive Frank Calabria said in a statement on Thursday.
He said the economics of coal-fired power stations are being put under increasing, unsustainable pressure by cleaner and lower-cost generation, including solar, wind and batteries.
The decision came just one week after utility giant AGL Energy announced the early closure of two of its coal plants.
Last year, EnergyAustralia, the third of the big three utilities, announced it would close a coal plant in Victoria five years earlier than originally planned.
According to World Bank data, Australia is one of the world's highest carbon-emitting countries per capita as it relies on coal-fired power for nearly 60% of its electricity.
By Sibel Morrow