Published on April 17th, 2012 | by Joshua S Hill6
Australia’s Largest Solar PV Project Continues Apace
“The demonstration of this proven technology in WA on a commercial scale should encourage the development of larger projects and reduce renewable energy costs in the medium to long term,” said Western Australian Energy Minister, Peter Collier, who joined with landholders, members of the Geraldton community and local contractors and First Solar, Inc., Verve Energy, and GE Energy Financial Services to mark the commencement of panel installation.
The 10-megawatt solar farm is located 50 kilometres south of Geraldton, with construction starting four months ago. Since then, above-ground electrical work has been completed and structural supports have been installed. Next on the list of things to do is to install approximately 150,000 First Solar photovoltaic modules, with completion of the project expected sometime in the middle of this year.
“The successful delivery of the Greenough River Solar Farm will help kick-off a long-term, sustainable market for utility-scale solar in Australia. First Solar has a strong record of successful project delivery, enhanced by working with local communities to ensure projects make a meaningful and lasting contribution,” said Jack Curtis, Vice President — Business Development & Sales, First Solar.
“When in operation, First Solar’s panels produce electricity with no water use, no waste production and no CO2 emissions,” Mr. Curtis added.
“GE Energy Financial Services sees Australia as a key growth market that will continue to need capital to fuel its expanding renewable energy industry. We hope this is the first of many such milestones in the country,” said Jason Willoughby, GE Energy Financial Services’ Australia business leader. “With our strong partners, Verve Energy and First Solar, we are pleased to help make this landmark solar project a reality.”
“The Greenough River Solar Farm is providing valuable experience for Verve Energy in the development of solar energy in WA,” said Tony Narvaez, General Manager, Strategy & Business Development, Verve Energy. “This experience will be very useful when Verve Energy pursues its aim to develop other solar farm projects in the near future.”