Productivity improvements through energy innovation in the Australian sugar industry
The majority of Australian sugarcane is produced on farms with full or supplementary irrigation. As an irrigated industry in a variable climate, energy is a critical input and significant cost component in the sugarcane gross margin. This project examined various technology components available to reduce the cost of pumping in a micro grid situation: solar PV, diesel gensets, grid energy, wind turbine and lithium-ion batteries, and the effect of grid connection policies and retail pricing. Finance options for renewable energy installations were also evaluated. SRA acknowledges the funding contribution from the Queensland Department of Agriculture and Fisheries (QDAF) towards this research activity.
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