$850m wind farm funded
AGL Energy and GE have announced development of the $850 million Coopers Gap wind farm near Cooranga North, 250km northwest of Brisbane, after AGL secured funding from the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF).
PARF is a partnership between AGL (20 per cent) and the Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC) (80 per cent), on behalf of Future Fund and QIC Global Infrastructure Fund.
The 453 megawatt (MW) development will be Australia’s largest wind farm to date, creating 200 jobs during construction and a further 20 permanent roles during operation.
GE will supply 91 3.6MW turbines with 137m rotors, and 32 3.8MW turbines with 130m rotors, as well as provide a minimum of 25 years’ worth of service and maintenance at the project, while CATCON will be responsible for wind farm construction.
Due for completion in 2019, Coopers Gap will produce about 1.510 million megawatt hours of electricity each year, enough to power the equivalent of more than 260,000 average Australian homes and reduce CO2 emissions by 1.2 million tonnes per annum.
The move is a part of PARF’S aim to develop about 1000MW of large-scale renewable projects, to be operated and managed by AGL.
QIC head of global infrastructure Ross Israel said Coopers Gap represented a significant investment from PARF and for renewable energy in regional QLD.
“The project is the largest committed renewables project in QLD [and] is a testament to the strength of our long term partnership with AGL and our ability to work constructively through times of significant policy uncertainty in the energy market,” Mr Israel said.
AGL managing director Andy Vesey said more than 800MW of projects had now been vended into PARF in its first 12 months of operation, following on from the Silverton wind farm and Nyngan and Broken Hill solar projects.
“The strong support we have received from our equity partners for these projects is a testament to the readiness of the private sector to invest in Australia’s energy transformation,” Mr Vesey said.
GE will supply and install 123 wind turbines for Coopers Gap.