An application has been lodged for the proposed development of a 375MW wind and solar power plant near Port Augusta in South Australia.
The application, lodged on Tuesday by DP Energy Australia, seeks approval for the installation of up to 59 wind turbines and up to 400 hectares of solar PV arrays.
DP Energy first publicly floated plans to build the integrated Renewable Energy Park in September 2014, on a 5,400 hectare site 8km south-east of Port Augusta – a part of Australia renowned for its rich solar and wind resources.
In May, it presented its plans to the local community via two consultation sessions, and, according to DP Energy managing director Simon de Pietro, received strong local support for the project.
“Overwhelmingly, the response …has been positive, with many people recognising the benefits that will flow into the local community,” de Pietro said.
One of those benefits would be a much-needed boost to employment in the region after Alinta Energy walked away from plans to replace its soon to be retired Port Augusta brown coal generators with a solar tower and storage power station.
Another benefit would be to the local grid; de Pietro says that by integrating different technologies, the Renewable Energy Park will be able to deliver energy when it is most needed, thereby reducing stress on the electricity network in times of peak demand and reducing the reliance on expensive peaking power.
“DP Energy is focussed on the delivery of high-quality, utility scale renewable energy developments, which will play a key part in the inevitable transition away from traditional forms of energy generation and towards cheaper, cleaner, more sustainable energy production,” he said.
All going well with the application, development of the Renewable Energy Park is expected to being in 2017 and last around two years, during which time it is expected to create around 600 full-time jobs and bring more than $44.5 million into the regional economy.
Once complete, the project is expected to generate electricity equivalent to the consumption of 154,000 South Australian households.
Also on Tuesday, the Ireland-based DP Energy announced it had secured tidal stream demonstration power production rights of 4.5MW on a Canadian seabed site known as Berth E in the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia.
DP Energy has plans to install three 1.5MW turbines at its new site.
Recently, it took a 50 per cent position in Berth C in partnership with Atlantis Operations Canada for the development of 4.5MW utilising Lockheed/Atlantis technology and further building its position in Canada.