Finley solar farm starts sending power to NSW grid

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John Laing’s 175MW Finley Solar Farm – the $170m project contracted to sell power to BlueScope Steel – has begun sending power to the NSW grid.

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Days after the 70MW West Wyalong solar and battery project got the all-clear to connect to the grid in the New South Wales Riverina region, the nearby 175MW DC (133MW AC) Finley Solar Farm is starting to show signs of activity on the National Electricity Market.

The Finley project, originally owned by ESCO Pacific but sold in late 2018 to John Laing, was due for completion last month, and to begin commercial operation from Q3 2019.

As illustrated in the chart below, provided by Paul McArdle from Watt Clarity, the $170 million project has started to show the first signs of generation output.

The glimmers of output will be a welcome sight not just for John Laing but for BlueScope Steel, which signed a seven-year renewable energy power purchase agreement (PPA) for the supply of electricity and LGCs from Finley Solar Farm.

Finley is also one of various New South Wales solar and wind farms that have been asked to install synchronous condensers – decades-old technology used to help manage the rush of new renewable generation on certain parts of the grid.

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