AGL Loy Yang with 2,210MW generates approximately 30% of Victoria’s power requirements every year and is an integral part of Australia's national electricity market. The Loy Yang mine supplies both Loy Yang A and Loy Yang B, fuelling around 50% of the state’s energy requirements.


Background

AGL Loy Yang is in the Latrobe Valley, 165 kilometres south east of Melbourne and was acquired by AGL in 2012. The power station and accompanying open cut coal mine cover about 6,000 hectares. The mine supplies coal to the Loy Yang A power station and the Alinta owned Loy Yang B power station as the fuel to generate electricity. Each year about 30 million tonnes of coal is produced.

AGL Loy Yang is a 24/7 thermal generation site. Our people work at all hours of the day and night, every day of the year to keep the lights on. In February 2019, we announced a $25 million investment to boost generation at AGL Loy Yang without increasing coal consumption or emissions. This increased AGL Loy Yang’s total capacity from 2,210MW to 2,225M.

Latest News

Overview
Community
Environment
Documents

Development

AGL Loy Yang is Victoria’s largest power station. The power station includes four 500+ megawatt turbo generators which were brought into service between 1984 and 1988. Upgrades through major maintenance programs and plant enhancements have taken generation capability from 2000 megawatts in the year 2000, to over 2200 megawatts today.

AGL recently completed a seven-year, $60 million, integrated control and monitoring system (ICMS) conversion project. The work saw all AGL Loy Yang operating units converted from ageing analogue systems to a state-of-the-art digital control system and was vital to ensuring energy supply reliability to Victoria.

Back to top >>


Transition

In June 2018, the Victorian Government extended AGL Loy Yang’s mining licence through to 2065. As part of its mining licence extension, AGL committed to provide five years notice of closure of Loy Yang A Power Station. AGL welcomed this extension as it provides certainty for employees as well as the local community.

AGL Loy Yang is committed to an orderly, respectful, and smooth transition for the Latrobe Valley away from coal-fired power generation. We encourage input into our plans for the community. If you would like to submit ideas, ask questions, or become a regular member of our Community Dialogue Group, feel free to get in touch with AGL’s Corporate Affairs team.

Back to top >>


Community complaints and enquiries

AGL understands that we don’t always get it right, and we want to be informed when we don’t. If you would like to provide any feedback, good or bad, or simply ask some questions, please feel free to get in touch via the following channels:

AGL Community Complaints and Enquiries Hotline: 1800 039 600

Email: AGLCommunity@agl.com.au

Mail: AGL Community Complaints & Enquiries, Locked Bag 3013, Australia Square NSW 1215

Back to top >>

AGL Loy Yang is a significant contributor to the regional economy and supports a range of Latrobe Valley community groups through the AGL Loy Yang Community Fund, as well as through our Stakeholder Transition program.


In this section


AGL Loy Yang Community Fund

The AGL Loy Yang Community Fund was established because we believe the communities that surround our critical generation assets should benefit from our business. The fund offers financial and other support to local community groups within the Latrobe Valley region under our Community Support Program.

This program is administered by a group of employees from AGL Loy Yang, known as the Community Funding Committee. The committee operates within stringent criteria to ensure funds and in-kind donations are distributed to projects or initiatives that have a clear community benefit.

All requests for donations or partnerships should be submitted via the AGL Loy Yang Community Support Application Form. If possible, please include any post-event or annual reports as accompanying documents to the submission.

If you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with AGL Loy Yang’s Corporate Affairs team.

AGL Loy Yang proudly continues its long association with several organisations. Take a look at just a few of our larger partnerships:

North Gippsland Football and Netball League

AGL announced its partnership with the North Gippsland Football and Netball League (NGFNL) in 2016. In 2019 we announced a second one-year naming rights sponsorship deal. AGL Loy Yang is in the centre of the NGFNL catchment area, and many of our employees and their families are involved in NGFNL clubs, making this the perfect partnership.

One of the many highlights of our partnership with the NGFNL was in 2017, when we approached AFL Gippsland and the NGFNL about the concept of a local Pride Cup. AGL understands how critical it is to be leader in promoting diversity and inclusion within business and the community. In support of the first ever Gippsland Pride Cup in July 2017, AGL Loy Yang lit up its cooling tower to feature a rainbow and Pride Cup logo promoting this inclusive event and what it represents.


AGL Loy Yang Traralgon Tennis International

The AGL Loy Yang Traralgon Tennis International is one of the largest events on the Latrobe Valley’s sporting calendar. It is considered a lead-up event to the Australian Open’s Junior Championships and serves as a qualifying tournament for players to become eligible for a Grand Slam.

AGL Loy Yang has sponsored the Traralgon Tennis International for over 25 years, investing over $375,000 over that period. In 2019, the AGL Loy Yang Traralgon Tennis International was nominated for 2019 Most Professional Tournament of the Year and also nominated for 2019 Most Outstanding Club.

Morwell International Rose Garden Festival

In 2019, AGL Loy Yang partnered with Latrobe City Council to bring together the Morwell International Rose Garden Festival, held in November. For the first time, the festival was expanded over two days and encompassed a Midsummer Night Light Show, which was powered by AGL Loy Yang.

Saturday’s garden festival featured garden stalls, workshops, and free children’s activities. The Sunday showcased the Gippsland region’s amazing food and wine producers with tastings, demonstrations, and live music.

Check out the incredible light show below.


Back to top >>


Community Forums

At AGL Loy Yang, we take community engagement seriously. We understand the need to brief the broader community on our operational activities, as well as other projects we are involved in. As the Latrobe Valley has power generation built into its DNA, many residents are interested in what we’re up to.

We hold an annual Community Forum, which is open to everyone who wants to join. The last community forum was held in November 2019, where we sat down with community members and held discussions about the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain Project (HESC), Rehabilitation and Closure, Environment, and Summer Readiness.

If you have any questions about the Community Forum, or would like to know about information that was discussed, please feel free to email us at AGLCommunity@agl.com.au

Back to top >>


AGL Community Energy Offer

At AGL, we understand that there needs to be a benefit to the communities that surround our electricity and gas generation sites. That’s why, in 2019, we launched a specialised Community Offer that is tailored to the communities in which we operate, including the Latrobe Valley.

Visit agl.com.au/CommunityOffer to check your eligibility and to sign up.

Back to top >>


Community Dialogue Group

The purpose of the CDG is to hear from community members and leaders about how AGL Loy Yang can better engage as well as provide an open dialogue to ask questions and discuss local issues particularly involving the energy industry.

The CDG meets quarterly. If you would like to attend a CDG meeting or would like to hear more information on it, please contact us at AGLCommunity@agl.com.au.

Back to top >>


Stakeholder engagement

As one of the region’s largest economic drivers and energy providers, AGL Loy Yang has an obligation to frequently engage with key local stakeholders. Theses stakeholders may include Federal and State Members of Parliament, the Latrobe City Council, relevant Government Department personnel, media as well as key community groups.

AGL is committed to an open, honest and transparent relationship with the communities in which it operates. Sometimes certain information cannot be divulged for legal, technical, or commercial reasons. Should this be the case, we will still endeavour to find an answer.

You can get in touch with us at anytime through the below channels.

AGL Community Complaints and Enquiries Hotline: 1800 039 600

Email: AGLCommunity@agl.com.au

Committee for Gippsland

In 2017, AGL Loy Yang signed on as a foundation member of the Committee for Gippsland.

The committee is one of the region’s leading advocacy groups and has had a positive influence in terms of securing major investment in the Gippsland area. Its report titled Our Region Our Future: Securing an Economic Future for Gippsland and the Latrobe Valley, looked at transition to a low-carbon future and what that means for the region. AGL provided critical input into this report and we support the industry recommendations.

AGL Loy Yang representatives regularly attend meetings with the Committee for Gippsland to engage and collaborate on transition for the Latrobe Valley community.

Latrobe Valley Youth Space

In 2017, the Victorian Government announced $4.3m in new funding over three years for a new Youth Space in the Latrobe Valley. As a key economic and social component in the local region, AGL Loy Yang was a participant in the consortia that helped realise this new space for the region.

In October 2019, State Minister for Youth, The Hon. Gabrielle Williams MP, and representatives from AGL Loy Yang, visited the future home of the Latrobe Valley Youth Space at Princes Drive in Morwell. The facility is expected to be complete in early 2020.

Integrated Mines Rehabilitation

AGL Loy Yang is a member of the Integrated Mine Research Group (IMRG) which was formed in June 2016 by AGL Loy Yang, Engie Hazelwood and Energy Australia Yallourn to fulfill requirements from the Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry Recommendation No. 18.

The IMRG held regular meetings and consulted with stakeholders to develop a list of research projects that will be undertaken as part of the 10 year research plan. The funding for each IMRG project will be determined on a project by project basis.

Worker Transition Scheme

AGL Loy Yang was the first generator to sign up to the Worker Transition Scheme which is an agreement with the Victorian Government and unions to allow ex-Hazelwood workers to transition to other generators including Loy Yang A station and mine.

Through the scheme AGL receives funding from the State Government to onboard ex-Hazelwood employees.

The first ex-Hazelwood worker started at AGL Loy Yang on 1st May and by the end of 2017 we would have employed around 40 former Hazelwood employees.

Environmental Review Committee (ERC) Meeting

The ERC which includes community and regulator representatives, meets quarterly to evaluate AGL Loy Yang’s environmental performance.

Recently, the ERC has taken a strong interest in community matters, and has been filling the role of Community Dialogue Group while this model is developed and implemented at AGL Loy Yang.

Community issues discussed through the year include: transition, rehabilitation, community engagement plan for 2016/17 and 17/18, and Community Dialogue Group (CDG) implementation.

Latrobe Valley Regional Rehabilitation Strategy (LVRRS)

The LVRRS was formed as part of the response to the 2015/16 Hazelwood Mine Fire Inquiry.

The inquiry noted that for rehabilitation of Latrobe Valley’s three brown coal mines the pit lakes and the partial backfill below water table are currently most viable options.

The LVRRS will examine and address some knowledge gaps associated with the pit lake rehabilitation option.

The Strategy will involve extensive geotechnical, groundwater and surface water studies, the assessment of potential regional impacts on the environment, and the evaluation of future land use options.

The Victorian Government will provide $12.6 million to fund the preparation of the Strategy which will be led by the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR) in partnership with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and oversight by the Victorian Government’s Rehabilitation Commissioner.

The Strategy will be in place by June 2020.

The Latrobe Valley Mine Rehabilitation Advisory committee will play a key role in community engagement and act a as conduit to broader stakeholder engagement during the life of the Latrobe Valley Regional Rehabilitation Strategy.

AGL Loy Yang's Environment Business Partner Sarah Gilbert is on the committee. She has an engineering background and has worked in the environment field for over 15 years, both for the environmental regulator and private industry.

Back to top >>


HESC

In 2018, AGL announced that it would be participating in a Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) project as part of a major collaborative initiative between leading Australian and Japanese companies, as well as the Australian, Victorian, and Japanese Governments.

This project has an important role to play in government and industry’s efforts to responsibly transition to a secure, economically viable, low carbon energy future.

THE HESC project will convert brown coal from the AGL Loy Yang mine into hydrogen at an adjacent site and then transport the gas by road to a liquefaction and loading terminal at the Port of Hastings. Once converted to liquid, hydrogen will be shipped to Japan using a world first innovative purpose-built carrier.

AGL will provide in-kind support for the HESC pilot project including the land for the plant and up to 160 tonnes of brown coal. Construction works on the pilot plant site at AGL Loy Yang are due to be completed mid 2020. In addition to this project, AGL has established a Hydrogen working group and is investigating renewable energy to hydrogen energy solutions as well.

Back to top >>


FAQs


HESC vs Renewables in Hydrogen creation?

Hydrogen can be produced using various resources such as: coal (incorporating Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology); biomass; or natural gas from nuclear energy or renewable energy sources (i.e. wind, solar, tidal, geothermal, and hydroelectric power to split water). The two production methods widely considered to be the most promising are hydrogen from brown coal (with CCS), and hydrogen from renewables.

Hydrogen production from coal is achieved through gasification. Coal gasification works by first reacting coal with oxygen and steam under high pressures and temperatures to form synthesis gas. Synthesis gas is a mixture consisting primarily of carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen (H2). The synthesis gas is cleaned of impurities, and the carbon monoxide in the gas mixture is reacted with steam to produce additional hydrogen and carbon dioxide. Hydrogen is removed by a separation system. The highly concentrated CO2 can be separated and captured using CCS technology.

Hydrogen from renewables can be produced in several ways, including production from electrolysis, biomass conversion, and solar conversion. Hydrogen production from electrolysis is achieved by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity from renewable sources.

One of the goals of the HESC project is to identify how the economics compare between Hydrogen production via coal gasification and electrolysis through renewable technologies.

Jobs creation

The pilot project is anticipated to support up to 400 direct and indirect jobs across the State’s supply chain and construction. There is potential for this to increase should the HESC project become commercially realised.

As a key element of the local community and economy, AGL supports new industry that can promote the economic development of the Latrobe Valley.

What are the plans for the AGL Loy Yang mine should the project be commercially successful?

At this stage, AGL is not amending its current mine rehabilitation plans as a consequence of the HESC pilot project. The Western side of the mine’s rehabilitation is currently underway, in line with AGL Loy Yang’s mining license.

As 2048 approaches, the mine’s footprint is set to grow East and then South.

Should the HESC project be commercially realised, AGL will engage with the community, government, and other stakeholders as to the future of the AGL Loy Yang mine.

Where will the Liquification process take place?

Liquification of the Hydrogen will take place at the Port of Hastings. During the pilot phase of the project, Hydrogen in gaseous form will be transported to the Port in trucks. This method of transportation of hydrogen has been well established and is already utilised at a smaller scale within AGL Loy Yang’s operations.

Will we be able to access the hydrogen locally?

The Latrobe Valley has the opportunity to play a critical role in the emerging global hydrogen economy. The purpose of the pilot phase of the HESC project is to demonstrate a commercially viable, secure, and reliable supply chain to feed Japan’s growing demand for hydrogen.

As hydrogen technology is further developed and commercially accessible, Australia would benefit from relying less on Petroleum imports and developing transport fuels locally.

For more information, please visit the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain website here.

Back to top >>

In this section


Environment

As a major power generator and mine, AGL Loy Yang recognises it has a significant responsibility to manage the environmental impacts of its operation.

AGL Loy Yang conducts its business in a way that reduces, as far as practicable, the environmental impact of its operation.

AGL Loy Yang pursues efficiency improvements across its business and works in cooperation with numerous organisations, government departments and industry partners to reduce its carbon footprint.

An Environment Review Committee, including community and regulator representatives, meets quarterly to evaluate AGL Loy Yang’s environmental performance.

AGL Loy Yang Mine Sustainability Report 2017/2018

AGL Loy Yang’s Mine Sustainability Report for 2017/2018 financial year can be viewed here. This report has been prepared to comply with a notice received under section 26 of the Mineral Resources (Sustainable Development) Act 1990 and includes sections on environmental management, rehabilitation, and communication engagement.

Back to top >>


Air quality

Electrostatic precipitators remove more than 99% of ash and dust from the coal burning process before the remaining gases and moisture pass to the atmosphere through the high chimney stacks.

Online continuous monitoring of power station chimney discharges combined with remote air quality measuring stations ensure discharge standards are maintained.

A number of ambient air monitoring stations across the Latrobe Valley measure air quality within the region.

Visitors to the Latrobe Valley area often mistake the water vapour coming from AGL Loy Yang’s hyperbolic-shaped cooling towers for smoke. This steam is caused by rapid cooling of high temperature water for recycling.

AGL Loy Yang is a contributing member and participant of the Latrobe Valley Air Monitoring Network (LVAMN). The LVAMN operates and maintains ambient air monitoring stations that measure air quality within the Latrobe Valley region. The LVAMN also undertakes air quality compliance assessments funded through industry member contributions.

Back to top >>


Water

AGL Loy Yang has implemented a number of water recycling and conservation measures to reduce its water consumption and minimise discharges to the nearby Traralgon Creek. AGL Loy Yang carefully manages and monitors its discharges to Traralgon Creek in accordance with its EPA licence.

Back to top >>


Environmental monitoring and compliance

AGL Loy Yang operates under a licence that is regulated by the Environment Protection Authority Victoria. The licence sets out a number of conditions with which we must comply including: limits on the allowable air emissions from the power station; limits on the contaminants in the water discharged to Traralgon Creek; environmental monitoring of air and surface water discharges; and submission of an annual performance statement to the EPA.

Back to top >>


Pathway for the gradual decarbonisation of our generation

In April 2015, AGL revised its Greenhouse Gas Policy which presented a pathway for the gradual decarbonisation of our generation portfolio by 2050 along with a commitment not to extend the operating lives of our existing power stations. This means that the Liddell power station is the first scheduled power station to close in 2022 with Bayswater and Loy Yang to cease operation in the 2030s and 2040s.

For more information read:

Back to top >>


Environment, planning and heritage

AGL Loy Yang has thorough knowledge of the planning, environment, and heritage requirements associated with the RL2015 area, and will consider these for any mine expansion or project development. Investigation will follow the following steps:

Exploration work planning

An environmental management plan will be developed to inform any exploration and base line monitoring activities and will be incorporated into the work program.

Native Title

Discussions will be held with Native Title owners prior to any exploration on Crown Land and an agreement will be sought for the Retention Licence.

Back to top >>


AGL Mining Licence

AGL Loy Yang holds Mining Licence 5189 in the Loy Yang Coal Field, to the southeast of Traralgon, Victoria.

The licence was issued on 6 May 1997 and expires on 6 May 2037. The open cut operations of the AGL Loy Yang mine are covered by this licence. The Loy Yang A and B power stations are located on an area excluded from the licence.

The AGL Loy Yang Partnership currently owns the mine, which provides coal to the 2200 MW Loy Yang A Power Station (owned by the AGL Loy Yang Partnership) and the 1050 MW Loy Yang B Power Station (owned by Alinta) and other minor customers. The power stations currently fed by the Loy Yang Mine provide approximately 50% of the total coal-fired electricity generated in Victoria.

The mine operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and is currently approximately 200m deep, 4.5km long and 2.5km at its widest point.

Work Plan Variation

Between August and November 2016 extensive community consultation was conducted on the Work Plan Variation which covers areas including community engagement, environmental impacts, fire risk, rehabilitation, operations and transition to closure.

The Work Plan Variation combines a Risk Assessment Management Plan with the Work Plan. All feedback from consultation was carefully considered and some of that was worked into the revised Work Plan Variation.

The most common theme emerging from this consultation related to rehabilitation and the end use concept of the site.

The Draft Work Plan Variation was submitted to the Department in December. The Work Plan Variation can be viewed here (file in excess of 80MB), and feedback can be passed on via the details at the bottom of this page.

Back to top >>


AGL Retention Licence RL2015

The former Victorian Department of State Development, Business and Innovation (now the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources) notified AGL Loy Yang on 6 January 2014 that it has been granted priority over the Retention Licence RL2015 covering the Flynn area.

AGL Loy Yang is in a strong position to cater for new coal development opportunities, given its natural advantages in terms of location, flexibility to expand and the extent of works undertaken throughout the life of the mine to date to position itself for future growth. To enable this growth to occur, AGL Loy Yang needs to maintain access to the existing coal resources from within the current Mining Licence Area (MIN 5189) and the area previously held under an Exploration Licence.

AGL Loy Yang has submitted an application to convert the existing Exploration Licence, which abuts to the east of Mining Licence MIN 5189 into a Retention Licence (RL2015).

Download the application area for RL2015.

Retention Licence Work Program

AGL Loy Yang (previously called Loy Yang Power Management Pty Ltd) was granted EL4683 on 14 December 2005 and since that time has worked in accordance with the agreed work plans.

AGL Loy Yang proposes to undertake the following program of work under RL2015:

  • Further exploration work
  • Resource delineation and coal testing
  • Hydrogeological investigation
  • Hydrological studies
  • Geotechnical investigation
  • Project discussions, negotiation and feasibility studies

Further Exploration Work

Precise details of the exploration activity will be provided in a work program for Government approval. The work program will be carried out under an occupational health and safety management plan as well as task specific requirements. No drilling will be undertaken without the required Government approval.

Resource Delineation and Coal Testing

The majority of the work required has already been completed in the Exploration Licence phase and earlier. Any new exploration drilling if deemed necessary would have cores logged and sampled for lignite and other testing. During exploration, site disturbance will be kept to a minimum and disturbed sites will be rehabilitated according to an environmental management plan that will be provided with the draft work program.

Hydrogeological Investigation

Data from existing aquifer depressurisation operating pump and observation bores will provide the basis for modelling in the RL2015 area. The coal resource exploration bores may also be able to be utilised for the monitoring system.

Hydrological Studies

An assessment of the surface hydrology within the RL2015 area will be undertaken utilising rainfall and surface information to identify and aid the development of water management strategies. This study will also inform the interaction between surface water, groundwater and any sensitive wetland areas.

Geotechnical Investigation

Samples will be taken for testing to ascertain the strength of materials likely to be encountered in the mine and in the mine batters. The material strength, particularly the shear strength, will influence batter angle design. Sampling and testing of materials from these boreholes will examine the following:

  • Strength of overburden materials (to assess mining requirements and provide information for concept design of overburden dumps).
  • Direct shear testing within lignite seams – joint and direct shear testing.
  • Direct shear testing within interseams - direct shear testing.
Project Development

Since the initial grant of the exploration licence there has been an increasing level of interest from industries wishing to establish in the region and transform raw brown coal to value added products for domestic and export use. AGL Loy Yang is one of the few entities in Victoria with experience in the commercial supply and delivery of brown coal to third parties, and has therefore received many approaches from potential customers.

After the grant of RL2015, AGL Loy Yang will continue to work with project proponents in the development of demonstration and commercial plants utilising improved coal processing technologies able to produce higher value products from brown coal. Project proponents are expected to include proponents for the following types of projects:

  • Coal drying and possibly briquetting;
  • Gasification and further processing to higher grade products;
  • Pyrolysis, producing gases, low volatile solid fuels, and tars;
  • Hydrological studies
  • Hydrothermal dewatering; and
  • Micronised refined coal (MRC).

Prospective project proponents will be expected to complete feasibility studies to confirm the compatibility of any project with AGL Loy Yang resources and sites, and to ensure that any project will be able to meet best practice from an environmental performance perspective.