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Acciona Energy has won a contract to build a half-a-billion dollar solar farm in Queensland as it takes the NSW government to court over the Sydney light rail project.
The new 265-megawatt solar farm will provide enough energy to power up to 122,000 homes, and is part of Queensland’s goal of generating half of all its energy from renewable sources by 2030.
It has been welcomed by the Queensland government, both for the energy it will provide and jobs it will create locally.
"Acciona Energy will develop, finance, construct and operate a $500 million solar farm through a 30-year lease with the Queensland Government and they are committed to Buy Queensland and Gladstone Buy Local procurement strategies," Cameron Dick, Queensland Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, said.
Spanish firm Acciona Energy's solar farm will cover 1250 hectares of land at Aldoga, outside of Gladstone, in Queensland.
"At maximum capacity, up to 265 megawatts, [it] will deliver the equivalent amount of energy needed to supply around five times the number of households in Gladstone," Mr Dick said.
"This invaluable project will support up to 240 construction jobs and 10 ongoing jobs, and better yet, the company will adopt Buy Queensland and Gladstone Buy Local procurement policies, giving preference to local sub-contractors and manufacturers.”
A detailed feasibility study is now underway to obtain development approvals.
“This could take around 12 months, meaning construction may begin in the second half of next year, and electricity generation in the second half of 2020," Acconia Energy Australia Managing Director Brett Wickham said.
The site is located adjacent to Powerlink’s Larcom Creek substation.
While the Spanish firm has its eyes set on this Queensland project, it is currently in the midst of a legal tussle with the New South Wales government over the Sydney light rail project, demanding an extra $1.2 billion to build the infrastructure despite it already facing lengthy delays.
Acciona's lawyers claim the government misled it over the complexity of the project.
This article first appeared on www.smh.com.au
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