Only weeks after Fotowatio Renewable Ventures’ (FRV) Australian platform announced its intentions to cross the ditch and develop 500 MW of solar energy in New Zealand, the company has received more good news with the announcement that its 90 MW (AC) Sebastopol Solar Farm near Wagga Wagga, New South Wales (NSW), has commenced the commissioning phase.
Reaching the commissioning phase is no small feat given current grid constraints, but to achieve this point of a project during a global pandemic and well-documented supply chain issues is all the more impressive.
Having completed its testing phase to allow the project to continually export solar energy into the grid, the solar farm, built by Beon Energy Solutions (Beon), is expected to reach full commercial operations in the next few months.
The project took Beon 11 months to construct, with general manager, Glen Thompson, commending FRV Australia, and local workers and businesses from Junee, Temora and Wagga Wagga for helping “to complete the project on time in the middle of a global pandemic and significant Covid-19 outbreaks in NSW and Victoria (VIC), with an outstanding safety performance throughout highlighting the commitment and skills of all the workers and businesses involved.”
According to Thompson, of the 200 workers the construction required, 73 positions were filled by locals. What is more, Thompson said that Sebastopol proves that renewable projects will continue to see deployment in regional areas as the energy transition can provide significant benefits to regional communities.
FRV’s managing director, Carlo Frigerio, described the news as “a great milestone for Sebastopol Solar Farm and we would like to congratulate Beon for this achievement and ability to reach this stage of the project maintaining high work and safety standards during these challenging Covid-19 times. We now look forward to see the plant at full generation in the coming months.”
FRV’s Australian portfolio includes the 125 MW Lilyvale Solar Farm in Queensland, the 106 MW Winton Solar Farm in Victoria, and the 69.75 MW Goonumbla Solar Farm in New South Wales (NSW). The company has also achieved financial close on the 115 MW Metz Solar Farm and continues to develop the 300 MW Walla Walla Solar Farm, all in NSW.
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