Construction starts at Yandin wind farm, set to be WA’s biggest

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Construction begins on biggest wind farm in W.A., with an expected capacity factor of 50 per cent.

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Artist's impression of Yandin wind farm. Supplied.
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Alinta Energy has announced that construction has commenced at the Yandin wind farm, which is set to become the State’s largest wind project tapping into some of Australia’s best wind resources.

The 214MW wind farm is being built near the town of Dandaragan, approximately 175km to the north of Perth, and is expected to be completed by mid-2020. It will boast a stunningly good capacity factor of 50 per cent, its backers and technology providers say.

The project will include 51 Vestas wind turbines each with a rated capacity of 4.2MW, generating around $400 million in investment and 150 jobs during the construction phase. Vestas will provide engineering and construction services to the project, along with serving as the turbine supplier.

Work on the project commenced as far back as 2012, with the initial planning permit granted to project developer Wind Prospect, before Alinta acquired the development rights to the project in 2016. Alinta announced in February that it had made the final investment decision to proceed with the project.

The Yandin project will also be Alinta’s first direct investment in the development of a renewable energy project.

“Today we’re saying thanks to the landowners, local community and others that helped us get to this point. We’re on track to have the wind farm up and running by the second half of 2020,” Alinta Energy’s executive director of merchant energy Ken Woolley said.

“Western Australia has some tremendous renewable energy resources, and we believe the Yandin Wind Farm will harness one of the best, if not the best wind resource in the country.”

The wind farm will be positioned within some of Australia’s best wind resources, with Alinta Energy anticipating that the average capacity factor achieved across the life of the project will be around 50 per cent.

An additional 10km transmission network link and terminal station will connect the project to Western Power’s 330kV electricity network.

Commencement of construction was welcomed by the CEO of the Shire of Dandaragan Brent Bailey, who praised the engagement the project undertook with the local community, which included a commitment of $50,000 towards community grants and projects each year.

“The Yandin Wind Farm is a great example of the Shire of Dandaragan’s desire to be recognised as the centre of renewable energy in WA, and it’s terrific to hear the project partners talk about the region’s potential,” Bailey said.

“Our aspiration to be the centre of renewable energy in WA is driven by input from our community, so I hopefully speak on their behalf when I say we are looking forward to the project becoming operational. We also welcome contact from other developers who would like to investigate how the Shire can support them to make our vision a reality.”

Alinta Energy has looked to expand its renewable energy portfolio, following a call for tenders to build up to 1,000MW of projects that was inundated with submissions from wind, solar and storage projects, that will be additional to the Yandin wind farm.

Last month, Alinta signed off on a 15-year power purchase agreement for the construction of the $480 million Solar River project, that will see up to 200MW of solar power and a 100MW/300MWh battery storage system, that is set to become one of the largest in the Southern Hemisphere.

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