Queensland is cementing its position as the solar state with the commissioning of Canadian Solar’s $29 million Longreach solar farm.
The solar farm is being progressively commissioned and is currently operating at 50 per cent capacity exporting 7MW of energy to the grid.
Representing Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham at the project inauguration event at Longreach, Member for Bancroft Chris Whiting welcomed the investment from Canadian Solar.
He said when fully operational, the solar farm would power around 5000 homes.
“The Palaszczuk Government’s Solar150 program is now paying dividends with Canadian Solar’s project being one of the first commissioned to come online to the national electricity market,” Mr Whiting said.
“The Solar150 program was designed to help kick-start the state’s solar investment boom by providing long-term revenue certainty giving proponents including Canadian Solar a 20-year revenue guarantee.”
The Longreach solar farm will be followed by the initial 25MW stage of Canadian Solar’s 80MW Oakey solar farm which is due to be running and grid-connected by September.
Canadian Solar chairman and chief executive officer Dr Shawn Qu said the Longreach project would be followed by the commercial operation of the two-stage Oakey solar farm with the first stage expected for completion in August 2018.
“Canadian Solar is looking forward to further contributing to the growth of solar energy in Queensland off the back of the great success we have already seen in our solar projects, like the Longreach solar farm and the Oakey 80MW solar farm,” Dr Qu said.
There are 56 large-scale solar projects currently in the approvals or construction process in Queensland.