Over one million solar panels powering Australia’s largest solar farm
Published Wednesday, 05 April, 2023 at 10:30 AM
Premier and Minister for the Olympic and Paralympic Games
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk
Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympic and Paralympic Games Infrastructure
The Honourable Dr Steven Miles
Assistant Minister for Hydrogen Development and the 50% Renewable Energy Target by 2030
Mr Lance McCallum
- Capacity to power the equivalent of 235,000 Queensland homes.
- Already, more than 350MW of clean energy is being exported.
- Construction has supported nearly 450 jobs at 1500-hectare site.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has today visited Australia’s largest solar farm, located in Queensland’s Western Downs region, to mark the end of construction on the mega project.
Totalling over 1 million solar panels, the 400MW Western Downs Green Power Hub has the capacity to power the equivalent of 235,000 Queensland homes and is connected to the Queensland SuperGrid by a new 275kV line built by Powerlink.
Located near Chinchilla, the Palaszczuk Government’s publicly owned CleanCo Queensland has signed a power purchase agreement with owners Neoen for 80% of the power generated at the site.
The completion of panel installation will allow the final testing and commissioning phase of the project to begin to get it to full capacity.
Construction of the project has also delivered a huge boost to Queensland’s regional economies, with an estimated $800 million in economic activity.
The solar farm is another major investment towards delivering 70% renewable energy by 2032 under the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan.
Quotes attributable to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk:
“Queensland is leading the charge with renewable power so it’s no surprise that the sunshine state is now home to the largest solar farm in the country.
“Our government has made it clear that Queensland homes will be powered by renewable energy from solar farms just like this one through the SuperGrid.
“I’m pleased we can deliver clean, reliable and affordable energy to every Queenslander because we own our power lines and the majority of power generation”.
Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier Steven Miles:
“Queensland is building the infrastructure and delivering more clean, green power generation and more jobs.
“We are blazing a trail when it comes to green energy and the capacity this solar farm will be able to produce is a testament to the Palaszczuk Government’s vision for the Queensland.
“Our Energy and Jobs Plan means more opportunities for businesses, more skilled jobs and more growth, especially for our regional communities.”
Quotes attributable to Assistant Minister Lance McCallum:
“The renewable energy being generated is already supplying some of CleanCo’s biggest customers including Coles, BHP, and Westfield shopping centres.
“This is our Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan in action, delivering more jobs in more industries, affordable power, lower emissions, and stronger economic growth.”
Quote attributable to Louis de Sambucy, Managing Director of Neoen Australia:
“We are delighted to have completed the panel installation of the largest solar farm in Australia at Western Downs, and we’re excited about the strong contribution that this asset will make to Queensland’s rapidly accelerating energy transition.”
Quotes attributable to CleanCo CEO Tom Metcalfe:
“The renewable energy generated by the Western Downs Green Power Hub will supply some of CleanCo’s biggest customers including Coles and BHP.
“Projects like these complement CleanCo’s portfolio of fast ramping, flexible gas and hydro generators to provide our customers with 24/7 reliable clean energy.
“We are proud to support renewable energy projects like the Western Downs Green Power Hub that deliver great local employment opportunities and economic outcomes in regional Queensland.
“The renewable solar energy generated here in Queensland’s Western Downs will contribute to the long-term sustainability of Queensland industries and communities, helping them to thrive in a net zero future.”
CleanCo customers with agreements underpinned by the Western Downs Green Power Hub include:
- Wesfarmers (Kmart, Target, Bunnings, Officeworks)
- Scentre Group (Westfield Shopping Centres)
- The Ville
- Cairns Regional Council
CleanCo has committed to bringing 1,400MW of new renewable energy into the market by 2025.
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