FRV reaches financial close on Walla Walla Solar Farm

Solar photovoltaic arrays (munna creek)
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Fotowatio Renewable Ventures Australia (FRV Australia) recently completed the financial close on Walla Walla Solar Farm in New South Wales.

The funding is being provided by ING, the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Export Development Canada in the form of a green loan that is compliant with the Loan Market Association’s Green Loan Principles.

Related article: FRV Australia completes refinancing of Moree Solar Farm

Walla Walla Solar Farm represents the fifth solar farm developed by FRV Australia in NSW and the 10th solar farm that it has developed in Australia. Together, these projects have a total power capacity of over one gigawatt (GW).

Last year, FRV Australia signed a 15-year power purchase agreement or PPA with Microsoft to provide renewable energy from Walla Walla Solar Farm, once the project is online, to its data centres in Australia. The PPA, which represents a long-term commitment similar to other PPAs Microsoft has signed globally, was instrumental in helping FRV Australia achieve financial close on the Walla Walla Solar Farm. This helps add clean energy to the electricity grid and supports Microsoft’s goals of achieving 100 per cent renewable energy by 2025. 

Located four kilometres north-east of Walla Walla and approximately 40km north of Albury, the solar farm will have a peak power capacity of approximately 300MWac. It will connect to the national energy grid and it will be built on the traditional land of the proud Wiradjuri people.

Walla Walla Solar Farm will also significantly contribute to economic development in the Riverina region. FRV Australia anticipates the project will create up to 250 jobs during the construction phase and will employ three to four permanent operational staff. The company will also award site maintenance contracts to local businesses.

FRV Australia has selected Gransolar to carry out the construction of the project in a joint venture with CHINT Solar. The Projects signed the connection agreements with Lumea and it is located in a strong and strategic part of grid.

In November 2022, FRV Australia completed the refinancing of another project in NSW, the 56MWac Moree Solar Farm; and in July, the company refinanced its 100MWac Lilyvale Solar Farm in Queensland. Earlier this year it was also awarded funding from the Victorian Government to support the Victoria Terang 100MW battery project and more recently conditional funding from ARENA to support Gnarwarre 250MW project, also in Victoria.

Related article: FRV Australia gets funding boost for Terang 100MW Battery

FRV Australia CEO Carlo Frigerio said, “We are delighted to announce that Walla Walla Solar Farm has reached this milestone. With the support of all parties involved, we were able to navigate the procurement challenges that affected our industry during the past year, and we are now ready to deliver another high-quality project that will be added to our portfolio, which now reaches 1GW in Australia.”

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