Plibersek gives green light for 100 MW solar farm in Queensland


Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek has announced approval for the Everleigh Solar Park, a proposed 100 MW project that is being progressed by Singapore-based developer Dream Project Incubators (DPI Group) in southern Queensland.

The Everleigh Solar Park is planned for a 209-hectare site located about 20 kilometres south of Chinchilla in the state’s Western Downs region. The project is less than 10 km south of the recently commissioned 204 MW Edenvale Solar Park that was also developed by DPI Group before being purchased by oil giant Eneos Corporation in a joint venture with fellow company Sojitz Corporation.

Everleigh is to comprise approximately 215,000 solar panels mounted on a single-axis tracking system. The facility will connect to the grid via Queensland network operator Powerlink’s existing Orana substation and is expected to generate enough clean energy to power more than 40,000 homes.

No date for the start of construction has been provided but the proponents said they expect it will take 18 months to build the solar farm which the federal government said has been approved following assessment under Australia’s environment law, with strict conditions to protect koala habitat.

Everleigh is the third large-scale renewables project to be approved by the federal government this month.

Earlier in the month, Sydney-headquartered developer Edify Energy secured approval for its 600 MW Smoky Creek Solar Farm in central Queensland. Soon after, the Melbourne Renewable Energy Hub in Victoria and set to include one of the world’s largest batteries at 1.2 GW / 2.4 GWh and a 12.5 MW solar farm, was given the tick of approval.

Plibersek said the latest approval is another step towards building a renewables future and achieving the government’s clean energy ambitions, which include the target of 82% of renewable electricity generation in the national grid by 2030.

“Australians know we need to act now and they’re doing their part – more than three million households now have solar panels on their roofs. But they expect the government to do its part too,” she said.

“That’s why we’re boosting renewables and putting Australia back on track to become a renewable energy superpower.”

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