Photo: from Infigen Energy's development application
Late last month, the NSW government granted planning approval for a $150 million AUD solar farm to be built near the town of Bungendore, not far from the Australian national capital of Canberra. The ABC reported that the solar photovoltaic arrays will cover 100 hectares (nearly 250 acres) and produce enough energy (50 megawatts) to power 10,000 homes.
The solar farm will be built alongside Infigen Energy's existing $400 million AUD Capital Wind Farm, Australia's second biggest wind farm, with 67 turbines, generating 141 megawatts of power, which the Braidwood Times says, could supply one third of Canberra's household needs.The siting of the solar farm next to the wind farm allows it to easily connect to the existing electricity grid infrastructure that was put in place for the wind turbines.
Existing wind farm that solar farm will join. Photo credit: Ian Waldie/Getty Images from The Guardian
Solar farms tend not to polarise communities like paddocks full of wind turbines do. According to the ABC report, the Member for the electorate of Monaro, Steve Whan, says he does not expect there will be any opposition to the project. "While wind farms are sometimes controversial, solar farms seem to have very broad support, and particularly in this region.
And it does seem a clever move by Infigen Energy. We wonder if they'll combine the two renewable energy systems at their other energy farms, as they own and operate wind farms not only in Australia, but also in the United States, Germany and France, including 41 wind farms that have a total installed capacity of approximately 2,246M.
This is the second planning approval obtained by Infigen Energy for a solar farm in NSW. They'd previously been granted approval for a 200 hectare photovoltaic farm with 100 megawatt capacity, which is said by Business Review Australia would, "have the potential to generate enough renewable energy to power 20,000 homes; and reduce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to taking 30,000 cars off NSW roads each year."
More Solar Projects in Australia
• Australian Military Go Solar in The Northern Territory
• Solar Tower Project Pipped at the Post
• ustralian Solar Cities
• Spray-On Solar Factory to be Largest Photovoltaic Plant in Southern Hemisphere
• Cate Blanchett Shines on Australia's Second Largest Rooftop Solar Installation