Fotowatio Renewable Ventures has reach financial close on the 100MW Lilyvale solar project in central Queensland, taking the total number of large scale solar projects under construction or about to begin to 20 and a total of nearly 1,800MW.
FRV, now owned by a Saudi group headed by billionaire Mohammed Abdul Latif Jameel, expects to begin construction soon on the solar farm – about 50kms north east of Emerald in the central Highlights region – and expects to complete it before the end of 2018.
FRV is also building the 100MW Clare solar farm in north Queensland, and has previously built the 57MW Moree solar farm in NSW and the 20MW Royalla solar farm in the ACT.
“I congratulate FRV for reaching yet another Queensland milestone, this is yet another project which will bring Queensland closer to reaching the Government’s 50 per cent renewable energy target by 2030,” Queensland energy minister Mark Bailey said in a statement.
“The Palaszczuk Government is proud to have kick-started the renewable energy boom in Queensland and this is just another page in that exciting story. We’re turning the sunshine state into the solar state!”
FRV and its Saudi owners grabbed the attention of the Murdoch media earlier this month, which claimed in a series of articles the Saudis were pocking $300 million in federal subsidies, including $140 million in renewable energy certificates. The stories were partially retracted after it was pointed out this was not true.
The Lilyvale solar farm has a 12-year power purchase agreement with Ergon Energy – and has similar deals with Origin for the Clare and Moree solar farms, – which includes both the price of electricity and the large scale certificates (LGCs), but ascribes little or no value to the LGCs.
Queensland has a 50 per cent renewable energy target, and recently closed a tender for 400MW of large scale renewable projects, including 100MW of battery storage.
The pipeline of Queensland renewable projects – provided by the Queensland government – includes:
Clare Solar Farm (100 MW), Collinsville Power Station (42 MW), Hamilton Solar Farm (57.5 MW), Hughenden Solar Farm (14.2 MW), Kidston solar project (50 MW), Lakeland Solar Farm (10.8 MW), Mount Emerald Wind Farm (180 MW), Normanton Solar Farm (5MW), Ross River Solar Farm (135 MW), Sun Metals Solar Farm (125 MW), Tablelands Sugar Mill stage 2 (24 MW), Whitsunday Solar Farm (57.5 MW), Daydream Solar Farm (150MW), Hayman Solar Farm (50MW), Lilyvale Solar Farm (100MW), Coopers Gap Wind Farm (460MW), Darling Downs Solar Farm (110MW), Longreach Solar Farm (15MW), Oakey Solar Farm (25MW), and Emerald Solar Farm (70MW).