Development approval for $1b solar storage project

The world’s biggest large-scale solar and battery storage plant has received development approval.

Lyon Group’s $1 billion Riverland Solar Storage project, located near Morgan in South Australia’s Riverland district, comprises a 330MW solar farm and 100MW battery storage system.

It will feature 3.4 million solar panels and 1.1 million batteries.

The approval from the South Australian Government follows a process that included wide-ranging community consultation, including formal information sessions hosted by the Mid-Murray Council.

Lyon Group partner David Green said the council’s strong support for the project and commitment to regional development had helped expedite the process.

“Mid-Murray Council has helped to move Riverland’s approval process along, which will result in an earlier construction commencement date,” he said.

“The jobs the Riverland Solar Storage project will bring to the Morgan region will start sooner because of Mid-Murray Council’s support.”

The project will employ 270 workers during construction and, assuming its connection offer is received shortly, is now expected to begin operations in the second half of 2018.

Its battery storage capacity will be approximately three times the capacity of the battery at Jamestown.

Mr Green said Lyon was committed to working cooperatively with the local community and would continue to work closely with the Mid-Murray Council to identify opportunities for local engagement and employment during the construction and operation of the project.

Services and equipment that could be sourced locally include site preparation services, access road preparation, structure assembly, electrical services, panel installation, and accommodation.

Mr Green said South Australian energy consumers would benefit from the introduction of battery storage, through downward pressure on wholesale power prices and a more stable system.

“Large-scale renewables and large-scale battery technology will play a central role in keeping our electricity system stable, reducing prices, and reducing emissions,” he said.