SunCable to see the light of day again as Atlassian co-founder takes reigns

The mega renewable power project is now back on track.

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SunCable is now moving forward under new ownership, with a renewed focus on the plan to link Australian renewable power with Asian demand, thanks to an impressive power cable. SunCable will still get its time in the sun.

For readers that haven't of this project before, the goal is to deliver what's being called the AAPowerLink which will provide "reliable, cost-competitive" electricity to customers in Darwin and Singapore.

There was recently a financial battle between Fortescue Metals Group Ltd (ASX: FMG) founder Andrew Forrest and Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes to win control of the SunCable business after a disagreement about what the project should do.

Cannon-Brooke's entity, Grok Ventures, was eventually successful.

How much electricity will be generated and transmitted by SunCable?

The project has been organised into two areas.

The onshore part of the project will include what's expected to be the world's largest solar array, located in the Northern Territory. It will deliver electricity to Darwin as well as to third-party industrial power consumers in/near Darwin.

The international part of the business will be about delivering electricity through a sub-sea cable to "highly credit worthy global corporate offtakers in Singapore".

SunCable says that AAPowerLink will have the ability to deliver around 6GW of firmed renewable energy in multiple stages.

In the first stage, it's intended that at least 900MW will stay in Australia to supply large industrial customers, including those located in the Middle Arm Sustainable Development Precinct in Darwin. SunCable mentioned that some of that power could be used to support hydrogen electrolysis, critical minerals processing, e-fuels and green data centres.

The first stage is also planning to see 1.75GW of electricity delivered to Singapore.

After that, an additional 3GW of renewable energy electricity is planned for customers in Darwin, bringing the total to almost 4GW.

What are the next steps?

SunCable said that its immediate priorities are to progress the required regulatory approvals to advance the AAPowerLink. It will lodge its submission to the Singaporean Energy Market Authority (EMA) later this month.

It's also going to continue to engage with the Indonesian government to obtain the required licence to lay subsea cable through its territorial waters. It's also going to work with the Australian federal government, Northern Territory government and the Traditional Owners of the project area.

SunCable also said it will establish an advanced High Voltage (HV) subsea cable manufacturing and testing facility, with AAPowerLink as an anchor customer. It's in discussions with established global subsea cable manufacturers to jointly develop, construct and operate this facility.

SunCable management commentary

Mike Cannon-Brookes said:

The green energy transition remains the greatest economic opportunity of our time.

SunCable's AAPowerLink project has all the component parts to make the next great Australian infrastructure initiative possible. It will create more local jobs and support our green manufacturing and renewable energy industries. It's set to deliver huge volumes of green energy to Darwin – powering a burgeoning green industry opportunity in the NT. ‍           

There's huge upside for both Australia and our neighbours, Singapore and Indonesia. We look forward to working with our partners across Asia to drive this.

Motley Fool contributor Tristan Harrison has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has positions in and has recommended Atlassian. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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