The Queensland Government released their Queensland Solar Farm Guidelines at Risen Energy’s Yarranlea Solar Farm.
The Queensland Solar Farm Guidelines provide practical guidance for communities’ landowners and project proponents.
“These guidelines are a clear checklist for local governments about what’s needed for sustainable, community and industry led large-scale solar development.” said Dr Lynham, Queensland Minister for National Resources, Mines and Energy.
‘Over the past three years Queensland has seen an unprecedented wave of renewable energy investment worth $1.3 billion with the construction of 13 large-scale solar projects from Lakeland in the Far North to Dalby in the south-west”.
“In the south-west alone, five large-scale solar projects are either underway or financially committed, bringing almost $640 million in investment and 670 jobs to the south-west, as well as more than 300 megawatts of renewable energy for the grid.
One of these large-scale solar projects under construction in Queensland’s south-west is Risen Energy’s Yarranlea Solar Farm, which was the venue for the Queensland Solar Farm Guidelines release.
The Yarranlea Solar Farm is in the second stage of construction and is located near Pittsworth, approximately 50km west of Toowoomba on the Darling Downs. The farm will be approximately 250ha in area and have a generation capacity of approximately 100 megawatt (AC), being sufficient to power up to 32,000 homes.
The Yarranlea Solar Farm is utilising local resources where ever possible and we are working with the local community to deliver the project with a minimum of disruption.
The Solar Farm will contribute to the green footprint of the state in support of the Queensland Government’s Green Policy.
“Yarranlea Solar and Risen Energy strongly support the Queensland Government’s initiative in developing the Queensland Solar Farm Guidelines and submitted a comprehensive review and provided positive feedback to the Government on these guidelines” said John Zhong, Project Development & Investment Director, Risen Energy (Australia).
“Risen Energy Australia has assembled an experienced development team with strong power industry backgrounds and have been able to provide a practical review aiding the development of the Guidelines” continued Zhong.
“Risen’s future developments will address and accord with the Guidelines, providing a roadmap for the engagement of the communities potentially impacted by development of Risen Energy projects.” said Zhong.
Queensland Solar Farm Guidelines
For traditional owners, communities and landholders the guidelines outline approval processes, technical and environmental consideration, ways to give feedback, information on the stages of solar development and what a new solar project can mean for a community.
For industry, these guidelines provide a one-stop-shop guide on navigating government development approvals, expectations about best practice to engage the local community, location guidance and the legal framework which governs solar farm developments.
Solar Farm site visit
To commemorate this site visit a ceremonial tree was be planted as part of the 7,500 trees for the screening vegetation supplied by McKinlay Nursery in Pittsworth. Purchasing these through a the McKinlay Nursery aligns with Risen Energy’s focus on using local resources where possible.
During this site visit the bulk earthworks undertaken to prepare the site for installation of the solar panels and the substation construction were viewed. The earthworks are being undertaken by Sedl Constructions, a local Toowoomba firm who have been engaged to complete the multi-million dollar earth works contract. The substation installation is being progressed by Yurika, the “commercial” arm of Energy Queensland.
Key attendees from Yarranlea Solar and Risen Energy (Australia) include Eric Lee, General Manager Risen Energy (Australia); John Zhong, Development and Investment Director, Risen Energy (Australia); Ross Tabaie, EPC Director; Chao Jia, Sales Director Risen Energy (Australia); Archie Chen, CFO Risen Energy (Australia); and Toby Menezes, Project Manager.
As owners of the Yarranlea Solar Farm project, Risen Energy is progressing the project from detailed engineering design, through construction, commissioning and ultimately the operation of the solar farm.
The main contract for the construction and installation of the solar farm is in the assessment stage. We would expect the successful tender to mobilise to site in mid- October.
Yarranlea Solar will be outsourcing construction contracts for the solar farm. This is specialised work, and local contractors and firms will be utilised where possible.
It is anticipated that approximately 200 positions will be created during the construction of the Yarranlea Solar farm which will have approximately 400,000 solar panels installed at the site. The workforce on site at any one time will vary as the project cycles through various construction phases (civil works, foundations, assembly, electrical assembly, cabling, commissioning).
Construction of the solar installation started mid-year and will continue through to 2019.
Yarranlea Solar has engaged Yurika, the commercial arm of Energy Queensland to develop a switching station which will allow the solar farm to connect to the existing 110kV network. Works on the switching station and farm substation have commenced.
In recognition of the importance of supporting local businesses, the Yarranlea Solar management team has arranged for accommodation within the town of Pittsworth.
Yarranlea Solar Farm, Queensland
The 100 megawatts AC Yarranlea Solar Farm will connect to the power grid using the existing Ergon Energy infrastructure, located close to the development site. This will allow transmission of power into the Middle Ridge Bulk Supply Substation for ultimate use in the Toowoomba and Darling Downs area.
Yarranlea Solar Farm, Queensland will use the latest Risen Energy PV panel technology and eventually integrate battery storage to allow it to supply power to the grid during periods of peak demand. The completed facility will have an operating life of 30 years, with the option for extensions. At the end of the facility’s useful operating life, all physical infrastructure will be decommissioned, and the land returned to its former agricultural use.
The project received development approval from the Toowoomba Regional Council in February 2017. Detailed studies and plans for the project can be accessed through the Yarranlea web site. www.yarranleasolar.com.au
About Risen Energy
Risen Energy was founded in 1986 and is a leading China-based PV solutions provider that is traded as an A-share on China’s Shenzhen Stock Exchange.
Risen Energy has over 6500 employees globally and are the seventh largest PV module supplier in the world, completing over thousands of grid-connected projects globally, including self-developed projects that they manage directly.
Risen Energy (Australia) has had an established presence in the Australian market since 2008, supplying solar PV panels for the retail market. Its long-term goal also includes the funding, constructing and operating commercial and utility-scale solar projects.