Environmental News, News

Queensland to be home to $2B wind farm project

Global energy giant Acciona Energia has started the development of the Herries Range Wind Farm in the Darling Downs Region of Queensland, with the project estimated to cost approximately $2 billion.

The new 1,000 mega-watt (MW) wind farm will be built within the MacIntyre Wind Precinct, bringing the precinct’s value to $4 billion, and the total amount of renewable energy to 2,000 MW – enough to power 1.4 million Queensland homes.

The announcement was made during a visit to the Port of Brisbane by Queensland premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, where the premier and cabinet ministers inspected wind turbine components awaiting transport to the MacIntyre Wind Precinct 60 kilometres west of Warwick. The MacIntyre Precinct (1,023MW), already under construction, will be equipped with 180 5.7MW turbines.

Premier Palaszczuk said the deal showed that Queensland was a front runner in attracting international investment in the global energy transformation.

“Our Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan is all about bringing more cheaper, cleaner energy into the system, while building the Queensland economy and that’s exactly that this deal does,” the premier said.

“Acciona Energia are one of the world’s leading developers of renewable energy projects and this additional $2 billion commitment is a strong endorsement that Queensland is a renewable energy superpower.”

The $62 billion Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan aims to have 70 per cent of Queensland’s electricity needs met with renewable energy by 2032.

The MacIntyre Wind Precinct, located in the Southern Queensland Renewable Energy Zone, will now include Acciona Energia’s MacIntrye and Herries Range wind farms, and government-owned energy company CleanCo’s proposed Karara Wind Farm.

Deputy premier Steven Miles said the 180-turbine Herries Range project would support up to 600 additional jobs during construction.

“The first two wind farms within the MacIntyre Wind Precinct – Acciona Energia’s 162-turbine MacIntyre Wind Farm and publicly owned CleanCo’s proposed 18-turbine Karara Wind Farm – were already expected to support 400 construction jobs,” he said.

“And that’s always been in addition to the 220 workers needed to build Powerlink’s transmission infrastructure that, as part of our new SuperGrid, will deliver the clean energy from MacIntyre Wind Precinct where and when it’s needed.”

Queensland energy Minister Mick de Brenni said the expanded MacIntyre Wind Precinct would mean thousands of Queenslanders engaged in another significant step for the nation, as it strives to shield households and business from exposure to volatile and expensive global fossil fuel markets.

“This precinct will support ongoing local jobs and local supply chain opportunities with hundreds of millions of dollars in procurement from businesses based in and around towns like Warwick, Inglewood and Toowoomba,” he said.

For more information on the Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan, visit https://www.epw.qld.gov.au/energyandjobsplan

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