Construction is expected to begin within 12 months on Australia’s first combined wind and solar plant, set to be located in the northern state of Queensland.
Local renewable energy company Windlab Limited will partner with Japanese Eurus Energy Holdings Corporation in a 50/50 joint venture to build the Kennedy Energy Park plant, in what will be the first large-scale hybrid solar and wind plant constructed in the country. Located in the Flinders Shire of central north Queensland, the project will cost approximately $140 million, and is set to begin construction in October and November, 2016.
The first stage will see the construction of 6 of the largest wind turbines ever constructed in Australia, amounting to approximately 40 MW, as well as 64,000 solar panels amounting to another 40 MW, together, generating the equivalent electricity required to power more than 25,000 homes. However, the Park is intending to seek further investment following the successful completion of stage one, with a goal to expand to up to 1,200 MW.
“In combination, these natural resources can provide a net capacity factor approaching 70%, better than “base load” coal utilisation in Queensland,” said Roger Price, Windlab Chief Executive Officer. “This particular site has been carefully mapped and we know it is predominantly windy through the afternoon and into the evening, and obviously experiences sunlight during daylight hours. This resource profile ensures almost constant energy production.
“Coupled with state of the art grid storage Kennedy will be able to match North Queensland’s’ current energy demand profile more than 80% of the time.”
This project represents a continuation of the relationship between Windlab and Eurus, after their involvement together on Victoria’s Coonooer Bridge Wind Farm.
“We are excited about another opportunity to work alongside Windlab, a company that has been achieving excellence in wind farm development,” said Hideyuki Inazumi, Eurus Energy Holdings Corporation President and CEO. “Our participation in the development of Kennedy also demonstrates our continuing commitment to the Australian renewable energy market.”
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