Here comes the sun for the Riverina

NSW Minister for Energy, Don Harwin, today welcomed the NSW Government’s approval for construction of one of Australia’s biggest solar farms in the Riverina.

Costing almost $1 billion with the potential to power a city of almost 1 million people, the 900 megawatt (MW) solar farm will be located in Yarrabee Park, 23km from Narrandera.

“When built, this new solar farm will have the capacity to power a city nearly twice the size of Newcastle.

“This project will support over 450 construction jobs over the construction period of around four and half years, providing a significant economic boost to the local economy.

“The project will significantly increase our energy capacity while contributing to a cleaner energy future for our state – a win win.”

Mr Harwin said the project approval followed the release of a Government developed Large-Scale Solar Energy Guideline, designed to lead applicants and the community through the assessment process for state significant solar farm proposals.

“The NSW Large Scale Solar Guideline provides clear guidance on the environmental and social impacts of state significant solar energy projects, encouraging early and continued consultation, and suitable site selection,” he said.

“The new guideline reflects the NSW Government’s strong commitment to NSW’S booming solar energy market,” Mr Harwin said.

  • There are currently nine major operating large-scale solar farms in NSW, with a total capacity of around 500 MW;
  • Six new solar farms have been commissioned this year alone, representing 305 MW and $475 million in investment;
  • Another seven solar farms are under construction representing 530 MW and around $720 million in investment;
  • There are almost 70 more solar farms with, or seeking, planning approval in NSW, with capacity to generate more than 10,000 MW.