News

SNOWY HYDRO SNOW DEPTH MEASUREMENT 2022

17/06/2022

Snowy Hydro collects snow depth readings at a number of designated snow courses across the Snowy Mountains of NSW as required for operational purposes. Spencer’s Creek snow course is the most recognisable of these locations as it is often cited by nearby ski resorts as a proxy for the ‘natural snow depth’. Deep Creek and Three Mile Dam are also recorded and reported on Snowy Hydro’s website

The information gathered by Snowy Hydro is primarily used as an input into seasonal forecasts for inflow to the Snowy Scheme. With advances in technology and different methodologies employed, the need for manually measured snow depth readings at designated snow courses is in decline, particularly in the early part of the snow season where precipitation is typically adding to the snow pack more so than contributing to inflows.

In parallel, safety is Snowy Hydro’s number one priority. By reducing the frequency of snow depth readings, we reduce the need to send staff to remote locations in poor winter weather conditions. This means we can schedule this work to occur when conditions are safest to do so.

Snowy Hydro commenced monitoring in mid-June 2022. We will take readings on an as-needed basis. This is likely to result in irregular updates, and less frequently than has been observed in the past. Snowy Hydro will continue to update its website after each snow depth reading is collected.

News

DRIVING HOME ROAD SAFETY TO THE NEXT GENERATION

13/05/2022

Snowy Hydro is committed to ensuring the next generation of locals are equipped with the skills and knowledge to help keep them safe on the roads, with the long-running Young Driver Program playing a crucial role.

For four years Snowy Hydro has partnered with Driving Solutions to provide local students with young driver training. This month more than 275 local young people participated in the program, which helps prepare Learner and Provisional drivers for the driving conditions they face on Snowy Mountains roads.

Since its inception in 2002, the Snowy Hydro Young Driver Program has provided more than 1,600 local students with the opportunity to improve their driving skills and become safer drivers.

Snowy Hydro CEO and Managing Director Paul Broad said the program demonstrated Snowy Hydro’s continued commitment to the safety and well-being of young people living in the Snowy Mountains region. 

“The Snowy Hydro Young Driver Program delivers learning exercises and activities that give our local kids the skills and knowledge to help keep them safe on our unique and at times, challenging, mountain roads,” Mr Broad said.

“These young and inexperienced drivers gain so much from the program – it’s really valuable and we at Snowy Hydro are proud to play a part in ensuring greater safety on the roads where we live and work.”

The program covered topics such as correct seating position and the importance of understanding the difference between vehicles with anti-lock brake systems (ABS) and vehicles without ABS. Students were taught when to fit snow chains on their vehicles while travelling in snow and ice conditions. They were also shown the correct way to use and fit snow chains on a vehicle. 
The activities and exercises provided useful and practical knowledge to assist the students when behind the wheel. Topics included driver attitudes and the effects of distractions when driving, such as mobile phones, passengers and vehicle navigation. Other practical skills were also discussed including how to understand correct and incorrect tyre pressure on their vehicles. 

News

NEW LEASE ON LIFE FOR MURRAY 1 TRANSFORMERS

04/04/2022

Snowy Hydro is carrying out a large project to refurbish the Murray 1 Power Station generator step-up transformers, a process that will significantly extend the life of these important Snowy Scheme assets.

Reconditioning and replacement of the bushings will help to increase the lifespan of the transformers by an extra 15 years. Under normal conditions, transformers are expected to operate for 30 to 40 years, but thanks to the thorough effort Snowy puts into maintaining its assets, the Murray 1 Power Station transformers will operate for many years to come – an amazing achievement. 

There have been a number of obstacles to overcome during the course of this project, including road closures along the Alpine Way due to natural incidents, weather extremes in the Snowy Mountains, and above all, COVID-19 and the closing of the border between New South Wales and Victoria. 

Murray 1 is located near Khancoban and Wilson Transformer Company (WTC), based in Melbourne, which was hired to do some of the important work, navigated a six-week   government approval process to cross the border from Victoria to work on the refurbishment through the pandemic.

WTC manufactured a purpose-built dry out tank at its Glen Waverley factory specifically for this major Snowy Hydro project.

The tank is utilised after the team has de-tanked the core and coils – which are then both put inside the dry-out tank. The team completes welding works and modification of the old transformer tank and lid, before re-tanking the unit into the original body.

There are two more Murray 1 transformer refurbishments and bushing replacements remaining, with the last scheduled to be completed in November 2022.

So far, the project has been highly successful, with approximately 100 workers involved, and no safety concerns or injuries. Snowy Hydro appreciates all those contributing to this project for prioritising safety and health above everything else. 

In addition, Snowy Hydro and WTC have worked with many local businesses in the construction, including electrical contractors PHE and Roddy Engineering, both based in Tumut, NSW.

News

SNOWY 2.0 POWERING AHEAD WITH COMMISSIONING OF TUNNEL BORING MACHINE FLORENCE

22/03/2022

Snowy Hydro and members of the local community have today come together to celebrate the commissioning of the third and final tunnel boring machine (TBM) for Snowy 2.0, Australia’s largest renewable energy project.

The 143 metre-long TBM Florence is one of a trio of technologically-advanced machines excavating more than 27 kilometres of waterway tunnels as part of Snowy 2.0, the huge pumped-hydro expansion of the iconic Snowy Mountains Scheme that is ensuring Australia’s secure and reliable transition to renewables.

Snowy Hydro Managing Director and CEO Paul Broad joined Snowy Mountains community members and representatives from Snowy 2.0 principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture for a celebration event and ribbon-cutting at Tantangara, where TBM Florence is being launched to excavate the headrace tunnel.

Mr Broad said it was a wonderful experience sharing a significant project milestone with the community, former Snowy Scheme workers and local school children and businesses.

“We want to thank the local community for their support. It’s great knowing that this massive project is delivering thousands of jobs, many training and apprenticeship opportunities for workers, and a major economic boost for the Snowy Mountains region and beyond,” Mr Broad said.

“The progress we’re making on Snowy 2.0 is terrific. The other two TBMs, Lady Eileen Hudson and Kirsten, are already powering ahead excavating the main access tunnel and emergency, cable and ventilation tunnel at Lobs Hole, so we’re delighted to be starting this very long and deep headrace tunnel from Tantangara.

“Watching TBM Florence’s big blue cutterhead spin today alongside people who helped build the original Scheme highlights the pride we at Snowy Hydro have in our pioneering past and how exciting the renewable energy future is with Snowy 2.0.”

There are almost 1,800 people currently working on Snowy 2.0, including hundreds of locals, with the project generating about 4,000 direct jobs and many more in the supply chain.

Snowy 2.0 will deliver 2,000 megawatts of pumping and generating capacity and 175 hours of storage – enough to power 500,000 homes simultaneously – which will underpin thousands of megawatts of intermittent renewables. 

Named after Australia’s first female electrical engineer, Florence Violet McKenzie (1890-1982), TBM Florence is set to excavate 14.9 kilometres of the 17km headrace tunnel. The 11-metre diameter Herrenknecht-designed machine has been purposely designed to manage hazardous dust and poor ground conditions while tunnelling up to 450 metres underground.

TBM Florence was named by local Berridale student Riley Douch as part of the Snowy 2.0 Tunnel Boring Machine Naming Competition, which highlighted ground-breaking Australian women in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM).
For more information about Snowy 2.0 visit snowyhydro.com.au

News

JINDABYNE LAKE LEVELS – Updated 21 March 2022

21/03/2022

High inflows to the Snowy Scheme, including Jindabyne catchment, have continued through March.

As the lake level at Jindabyne approached 100% on 7 March, additional releases were made to the Snowy River below Jindabyne Dam to manage the high inflows. These release have now tapered off, and will again follow the environmental release targets notified here: https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/about/reports/

The outlook as we head towards winter is for wet conditions to continue. Snowy Hydro will continue to pump water from Jindabyne to Geehi to be released through Murray 1 and 2 Power stations into the upper Murray River at every opportunity. Further releases to the Snowy River may still be required to avoid uncontrolled releases.

If Lake Jindabyne reaches 100%, it will trigger operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.
For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit
https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/generation/live-data/lake-levels/ and
https://dpie.nsw.gov.au/water/home
Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.
DPE Water will engage with landowners subscribed to its SMS service.

News

UPDATED: JINDABYNE LAKE LEVELS

24/01/2022

December 2021 was officially the wettest since records began for the Lake Jindabyne catchment and with over 160mm of rain so far, January isn’t too far behind. The lake level will continue to stay high throughout summer. 

Releases from Jindabyne Dam to the Snowy River returned to the advised environmental releases from 18 January. Additional flows above the notified environmental releases into the Snowy River are possible while wet conditions persist. Snowy Hydro will continue to look for opportunities to pump water to Geehi Reservoir, however, at times, the surplus of water pumped to Geehi will be returned to Jindabyne.

It remains possible that the storage may again reach 100% (or full supply level), triggering operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE Water) has been consulted on this plan and continues to work closely with Snowy Hydro to make controlled releases to manage the spill risks and minimise downstream impacts.

For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit 

https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/generation/live-data/lake-levels/ and

https://dpie.nsw.gov.au/water/home

Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.

News

UPDATED: JINDABYNE LAKE LEVELS

11/01/2022

December 2021 was officially the wettest since records began for the Lake Jindabyne catchment. The lake level will continue to stay high throughout summer. 

Daily water releases from the lake of up to 3,000 megalitres (ML) per day will continue until at least 17 January. It is likely that additional flows above the notified environmental releases will continue down the Snowy River while wet conditions persist. Snowy Hydro will continue to look for opportunities to pump water to Geehi Reservoir, however, at times, the surplus of water pumped to Geehi will be returned to Jindabyne.

It remains possible that the storage may again reach 100% (or full supply level), triggering operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE Water) have been consulted on this plan and continue to work closely with Snowy Hydro to make controlled releases to manage the spill risks and minimise downstream impacts.

For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit 

https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/generation/live-data/lake-levels/ and

https://dpie.nsw.gov.au/water/home

Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.

News

UPDATED: JINDABYNE LAKE LEVELS

07/01/2022

December 2021 was officially the wettest since records began for the Lake Jindabyne catchment. The lake level will continue to stay high throughout summer. 

Daily water releases from the lake of 3,000 megalitres (ML) per day will continue until at least 10 January. It is likely that additional flows above the notified environmental releases will continue down the Snowy River while wet conditions persist. Snowy Hydro will continue to look for opportunities to pump water to Geehi Reservoir, however, at times, the surplus of water pumped to Geehi will be returned to Jindabyne.

It remains possible that the storage may again reach 100% (or full supply level), triggering operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE Water) have been consulted on this plan and continue to work closely with Snowy Hydro to make controlled releases to manage the spill risks and minimise downstream impacts.

For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well-informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit 

https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/generation/live-data/lake-levels/ and

https://dpie.nsw.gov.au/water/home

Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels.

News

UPDATED: JINDABYNE DAM SPILL

05/01/2022

Due to additional rainfall in the forecast, Snowy Hydro is increasing releases from Jindabyne Dam to the Snowy River from the planned target of 200ML per day, to 3,000ML per day.

These increased releases will reduce the risk of flooding and minimise pressure on communities around and downstream of Lake Jindabyne.

It remains possible that the storage may again reach 100% (or full supply level), triggering operation of the spillway gates. Dam safety is paramount at this time and the spillway gates will automatically release water at any time the storage reaches or exceeds 100%.

NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE Water) have been consulted on this plan and continue to work closely with Snowy Hydro to make controlled releases to manage the spill risks and minimise downstream impacts.

Lake levels are anticipated to remain high for at least the next month, with continuing wet weather predicted in the seasonal outlook.

For the community, the most important message is to stay safe and well informed. The public can stay updated about flood alerts here:

For more information about releases into the Snowy River visit
https://www.snowyhydro.com.au/generation/live-data/lake-levels/ and
https://dpie.nsw.gov.au/water/home

Snowy Hydro will continue to keep the community informed about management of water in Lake Jindabyne through its website and social media channels

News

SNOWY 2.0 RAMPS UP WITH COMMISSIONING OF SECOND TUNNEL BORING MACHINE

06/12/2021

Snowy Hydro has today achieved another exciting milestone, with the commissioning of the second tunnel boring machine (TBM) for Snowy 2.0, Australia’s largest renewable energy project.

The 11-metre diameter TBM Kirsten, one of the most innovative and technologically-advanced machines in the world, is one of three TBMs that will excavate more than 27km of tunnels for the massive pumped-hydro expansion of the iconic Snowy Scheme.

Snowy 2.0, which is on-budget and due to produce first power in 2025, is fundamental to Australia’s transition to a renewable energy future. Its 2,000 megawatts of pumping and generating capacity and 175 hours of storage – enough to power 500,000 homes simultaneously – will underpin thousands of megawatts of intermittent renewables.

Snowy Hydro CEO Paul Broad said Snowy 2.0 was creating 4,000 jobs and significant training and apprenticeship opportunities for workers, while providing a major economic boost for the Snowy Mountains region and beyond.

“Our first TBM, the Lady Eileen Hudson, is already a kilometre into the mountain excavating the main access tunnel and now we have TBM Kirsten continuing the tunnelling and construction progress for this amazing project,” Mr Broad said. 

“Our growing workforce of almost 1,400 includes hundreds of people from the local region and we have invested more than $70 million with local businesses so far.

“Upskilling workers and investing in the future of our youth will be important legacies of this project so it is very pleasing to see Snowy 2.0 apprentices around site learning their trades and local people having the chance to work on the TBMs.”

Mr Broad, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor, and representatives from Snowy 2.0 principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture, today toured TBM Kirsten at Lobs Hole and watched the cutterhead spin.

Named after NSW astrophysicist and popular science communicator Kirsten Banks, TBM Kirsten is set to excavate the 2.9km emergency, cable and ventilation tunnel (ECVT), which provides alternate access to the underground power station. The 205-metre-long TBM will then bore the 1.4km inclined pressure shaft (IPS) and a 2.4km section of the headrace tunnel.

TBM Kirsten is setting a global standard in tunnel boring technology, just as the original Snowy Scheme developed rock bolting techniques that are still used throughout the world today. 

It has been specially designed to excavate the IPS on a very steep gradient (to +47% or a 25-degree angle) so all equipment within the TBM can switch to work on the incline, and the stairways and walkways pivot to remain horizontal.

TBM Kirsten was named earlier this year by local student Kobe Burnes as part of the Snowy 2.0 Tunnel Boring Machine Naming Competition, which highlighted leading Australian women in STEM.

News

FREE TRAINING TO HELP LOCALS LAND SNOWY 2.0 JOBS

12/11/2021

A graduation ceremony has been held today in Wagga Wagga for Aboriginal people who have completed a fee-free skills training program as part of the multi-billion dollar Snowy 2.0 project.

Nine participants in the program celebrated their graduation at an event attended by the Federal Member for Riverina, Michael McCormack MP and Wagga Mayor, Greg Conkey. Another program participant is already employed at the Snowy 2.0 concrete segment factory in Cooma.

The seven-week pre-employment training was an initiative of Snowy Hydro’s Snowy 2.0 principal contractor, Future Generation Joint Venture, and funded by Training Services NSW. 

Snowy 2.0 is the largest renewable energy project in Australia and will utilise pumped hydro to significantly expand the Snowy Scheme. It will deliver on-demand power to 500,000 homes at the same time, and large-scale storage to underpin thousands of megawatts of intermittent renewables. Two existing dams are being connected as part of the project through 27-kilometres of tunnels and a new underground power station. 

The Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee said this was a great example of upskilling people in the regions to benefit from major infrastructure projects.

“This $5.1 billion Snowy Hydro project is expected to create 4,000 jobs over the life of the project, and it’s important that local people get the opportunity to work on it,” Mr Lee said.

The program saw participants learn to carry out and measure calculations, use construction tools and equipment and meet WHS requirements. 

Future Generation, in partnership with TAFE NSW, developed the program after consultation with the Aboriginal community, and included yarning circles and Indigenous artworks. 

Snowy Hydro Relations Manager Dean Lynch said the training and upskilling opportunities associated with Snowy 2.0 would create an important legacy.

“At Snowy Hydro we have a long-established culture of providing learning opportunities for employees and we are delighted that through Snowy 2.0 we can generate education and ongoing benefits for local and regional communities. This training is helping people acquire skills that make them job-ready and will be great not only for Snowy 2.0, but other construction projects in the future.”

The program is thanks to collaboration between Training Services and TAFE NSW, NIAA, NSW

Aboriginal Affairs, Corporate Connexions, Department of Education Skills & Employment, Job Active providers and all the present and emerging elders who have been directly involved. 

News

NEW TRAINEE SURVEYORS JOIN SNOWY 2.0 TEAM

10/11/2021

Snowy 2.0 is generating exciting employment and upskilling opportunities for the local community, with six men and women from the local region recently joining Snowy Hydro’s nation-building renewable energy project as surveying trainees.

The $5.1 billion Snowy 2.0 project is delivering thousands of jobs and significant economic benefit to the local region, with around 1,300 people now working onsite.

The trainee group, employed by Snowy 2.0 principal contractor Future Generation Joint Venture, has started formal training in Surveying and Spatial Sciences at TAFE NSW. 

The new recruits – Emily Smith (Adaminaby), Trent Thatcher (Tumut), Ian Kilowsky (Jindabyne), Samuel Hayes (Adelong) and Stuart Donlan and Dominic Mooney (Cooma) – are already working across a range of Snowy 2.0 sites.

Future Generation Survey Manager, David Ibbotson, has welcomed the new trainees and is happy to see people entering the surveying industry and training for the future. 

“All six of our trainees will learn from our experienced survey team, and I look forward to watching our trainees grow and prove their skills working across our project sites” Mr Ibbotson said. 

“I hope they will soon have the skills to guide tunnelling excavations underground and continue their education to complete formal qualifications in surveying and spatial sciences,” he said.

Snowy Hydro Relations Manager Dean Lynch said the Snowy 2.0 training and education opportunities were an important workforce legacy.

“We have always wanted the local community to benefit from this project not only through the business investment and economic boost, but through jobs and training,” Mr Lynch said. “This intake of surveying trainees gives another group of local people the chance to learn valuable skills and establish a career through Snowy 2.0.” 

Mr Ibbotson said Future Generation plans to expand the survey traineeships and has encouraged other local people to apply for future positions that could lead to career pathways as survey technicians and assistants.

“I am very encouraged so far by the aptitude and tenacity displayed by the first group of trainees and look forward to watching them exceed and develop in a profession I have personally found constantly challenging and endlessly rewarding,” he said.

Future Generation Training Manager, Aaron Reid, acknowledged Mr Ibbotson’s commitment in attracting the new Snowy 2.0 recruits.

“It is extremely satisfying seeing how our employees are taking care of their own work and are happy to share their knowledge. This represents the spirit of Future Generation JV,” Mr Reid said. 

“We are pleased to promote training and apprenticeship programs on Snowy 2.0 and we welcome more enthusiastic and passionate young professionals interested to join the project team. Future Generation is committed to providing skills and opportunities that can be transitioned from the Snowy 2.0 project to the local region and to build individual skills and capabilities,” he said.

Snowy 2.0 is a nation-building project that will underpin thousands of megawatts of renewables and will continue to keep the lights on for generations to come.

Future Generation is a joint venture created specifically to build Snowy 2.0 on behalf of Snowy Hydro Limited. The joint venture brings the combined engineering expertise of three companies — Italy’s Webuild (formerly Salini Impregilo), Australian-based Clough, and US-based Lane Construction.

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