Plans for a 180 MW wind farm in Australia’s Queensland state have been given the green light.
The state government says that the A$350 million Banana Range wind farm will add to the recent surge in wind power generation in Queensland as well as boost the local economy.
The Banana Range wind farm is being developed by Orange Creek Energy, a subsidiary of Brisbane-based Lacour Energy and will be located south-west of Gladstone. Construction is due to start in 2020 and will take two years, the developers said.
Queensland’s Minister for Planning Cameron Dick said the new 50-turbine wind farm will boost the total capacity of wind generation approved by the Queensland government to 2240 MW, enough to power over one million homes.
“The government strongly supports investment in regional projects and the Banana Range wind farm, located 20 km west of Biloela, will provide a huge boost for the local economy,” Mr Dick said.
“With up to 150 construction jobs and up to 15 ongoing jobs, the Banana Range wind farm will not only generate electricity for homes and businesses but will be an economic energy source for the surrounding region.
“Besides the great environmental benefits for Queensland, investment in projects such as this also creates a flow-on economic effect for local businesses and assists in diversifying the town’s economy.
Other major wind farms in development in Queensland include the 453 MW Coopers Gap project between Dalby and Kingaroy, the 180 MW Mount Emerald wind farm, and the 130 MW Kaban Green power hub.
The projects will place downward pressure on electricity prices and take Queensland closer to its 50 per cent renewable energy target by 2030.
“Queensland has more than 2370 MW of large-scale renewable energy capacity operating already and another 250 committed or under construction,” said Queensland’s Minister for Energy, Dr. Anthony Lynham. “Around 18 000 MW more of large-scale renewable capacity is currently at earlier stages of development.”
“Together, these projects represent more than A$5 billion in capital investment and more than 4500 constructions jobs in regional Queensland.”