OX2 Australia, formally ESCO Pacific, is to develop a new solar farm expected to add 25 MW of new renewable energy generation capacity into Australia’s main energy grid as part of a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Google and Sydney-based data centre specialist AirTrunk.
Under the agreement, the Melbourne-headquartered OX2 will develop the PV plant in the Riverina district of New South Wales (NSW). AirTrunk will procure the renewable energy and associated time-based energy certificates generated by the solar farm on behalf of Google, helping to advance the internet giant’s 2030 goal to operate on 24/7 carbon-free energy on every grid where it operates.
The solar plant is expected to generate power from 2025.
Google Australia Managing Director Mel Silva the project will support local infrastructure to tackle big challenges like climate change and support a sustainable digital economy.
“Industry collaboration and innovation are crucial to achieving our ambitious sustainability objectives, including our efforts to drive a substantial increase in carbon-free energy capacity across the Asia Pacific region,” she said.
OX2 Australia Country Manager Rachel Watson said the tech companies’ commitment to buying carbon-free energy is helping to “accelerate the energy transition and get more renewable energy into the system.”
OX2 announced its entry into the Australian market earlier this year with the acquisition of Esco Pacific, one of the country’s biggest utility-scale solar developers.
It now has an 825 MW pipeline of solar projects in development. In NSW, these include the 100 MW Sandigo Solar Farm located near Narrandera in the Riverina region and the nearby 80 MW Mulwala Solar Farm.
It is also developing the 90 MW Summerville Solar Farm project and associated 90 MW, four-hour battery near Rapville in the state’s north, and is teaming with Idemitsu Australia to develop the 135 MW Muswellbrook Solar Farm in the Upper Hunter region. This project includes a 135 MW two-hour battery.
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