The Glenrowan Solar Farm in Northern Victoria has commenced construction as CIMIC Group’s Pacific Partnerships reaches financial close for the renewable energy project.
The 102MW solar farm is the first project to be supported through the second Victorian Renewable Energy Target Auction (VRET2) and it is anticipated to support up to 150 full-time jobs during its construction.
“This project is great for local jobs – it puts North East Victoria at the forefront of our renewable energy transition,” Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes said.
The new solar farm is going to be built in the Rural City of Wangaratta, about 2 kilometres south-west of Glenrowan and 230 kilometres north-east of Melbourne. The project site is located within the State’s Central North Renewable Energy Zone.
The Glenrowan Solar Farm is being developed by Pacific Partnerships through its energy business, Pacific Partnerships Energy. Meanwhile, the engineering, procurement, construction and subsequent operations and maintenance of the solar farm is being undertaken by UGL.
Glenrowan Solar Farm is due to begin operations in late 2023.
“The start of construction at Glenrowan Solar Farm is a key milestone. It builds on our history of delivering large-scale renewable energy project such as wind, solar and utility-scale battery installation, as well as the infrastructure to connect those assets to the grid, through UGL and CPB Contractors,” CIMIC Group Executive Chairman Juan Santamaria said.
“Securing a long-term VRET2 support agreement with the State of Victoria for clean power from the Glenrowan Solar Farm has been instrumental in giving the certainty needed to secure the connection agreements, regulatory approvals as well as construction and operations contracts to achieve financial close,” Pacific Partnerships Managing Director Simon Nicholls said.
“UGL is well-established as a leader in the engineering, design, procurement, installation and operation of renewable energy assets across Australia. The Glenrowan Solar Farm to be built on the 245hs site will generate an installed capacity of up to 130MWdc which would equate to enough independent electricity to power approximately 45,000 Victorian homes,” UGL Managing Director Doug Moss said.
The Victorian Government is bringing forward six projects through VRET2, providing 623MW of renewable power as well as about 365MW and 600MWh of new battery energy storage.
These projects are also anticipated to drive new investment, local employment and help meet the goal of 100 per cent renewable electricity for all State Government operations by 2025.
Overall, VRET2 is expected to support 920 direct jobs and attract $1.48 billion in investments in renewable energy projects. Approximately $1 billion of this investment is going to be spent on local supply chains during the construction phase as a result of strong local content requirements.
The projects delivered through VRET2 forms part of the Victorian Government’s renewable energy target of 95 per cent by 2035 – which is set to create 59,000 jobs in the renewable energy sector and help the State meet its net-zero emissions target by 2045.
“Our Victoria’s historic VRET2 auction is helping to supply all Victorian Government operations with 100 per cent clean renewable electricity by 2025 – and it will attract billions of dollars of investment into regional Victoria,” Minister for Energy and Resources Lily D’Ambrosio said.
“The Glenrowan Solar Farm will help power our transition to 95 per cent renewable electricity by 2035, while creating jobs across the North East,” Minister for Environment Ingrid Stitt said.
Source: Premier of Victoria – Media Centre; Glenrowan Solar Farm (1,2)