$1.96bn MacIntyre Wind Precinct in QLD reaches major milestone

Monica Gameng   |   March 23, 2022
Acciona wind farm (cr: Queensland Government)

The $1.96 billion MacIntyre Wind Precinct development in Queensland has marked a new major milestone prior to the beginning of construction with a grid connection agreement signed with Powerlink. 

As part of this $170 million agreement, a new 65-kilometre transmission line is going to be built along with two new switching stations. 

“Queensland has long been Australia’s energy powerhouse and this $170 million agreement ensures that will continue to be the case. 

“The site has been selected because of its consistent winds, especially in the evening, and its proximity to existing transmission lines. 

“It’s projects like this that will ensure we can deliver on our target of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said. 

Project developer ACCIONA Australia is partnering with publicly owned energy companies CleanCo and Powerlink in delivering more reliable and affordable renewable energy for Queensland. 

The MacIntyre Wind Precinct will consist of two wind farms – the 102MW Karara Wind Farm that will be owned and operated by CleanCo and the 923MW MacIntyre Wind Farm. 

CleanCo has also signed a power offtake agreement with ACCIONA to purchase about 400MW of renewable energy from the MacIntyre Wind Farm. 

“This project will bring more affordable renewable power to Queensland. 

“This agreement with Powerlink unlocks $2 billion of investment in Queensland, 400 construction jobs on the wind farms and another 220 jobs building Powerlink’s transmission lines,” Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick said. 

The development of the MacIntyre Wind Precinct is expected to anchor the State’s Southern Renewable Energy Zone, which is projected to have a total capacity of 1,500MW. 

“The precinct is well positioned in an area of high and consistent wind resource, with a total of 180 turbines to be built across both wind farms. 

“When complete, it will provide enough power to meet the energy needs of 700,000 homes,” Minister for Energy Mick de Brenni said. 

In January of this year, CIMIC Group company UGL Limited announced that the company was appointed to deliver the two 330kV switching stations and the 65-kilometre transmission line. You can read more about the contract award here. 

“At more than 1,000MW, this is the first time we’ve connected a project of this scale to our network here in Queensland. 

“We will be constructing 65 kilometres of brand new transmission line and building two new switching stations, so our priority will be on working closely with local communities to ensure they see long term benefits from this connection work,” Powerlink Chief Executive Paul Simhauser said. 

The MacIntyre Wind Precinct is going to be built on land that is primarily used for sheep farming. The two wind farms – Karara and MacIntyre – will have a total of 180 wind turbines, generating 1,026MW of clean energy. 

Due to its scale, the MacIntyre Wind Precinct is set to become one of the largest onshore wind farms in the world. 

“We’re really proud the project is getting underway and the jobs and investment this will bring in the region,” ACCIONA Managing Director Brett Wickham said. 

“CleanCo is really excited to be building Karara Wind Farm and supporting our customers to meet their own decarbonisation objectives,” CleanCo Interim CEO Darryl Rowell said. 

Major construction on the MacIntyre Wind Precinct project is due to commence in the second quarter of 2022 and be completed in 2024. 

Source: Queensland Government – Media Statements; ACCIONA; Powerlink Queensland; Renewables Now; Energy Magazine 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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