The “first ever” solar farm to be developed by global oil giant Shell, the 120MW Gangarri project near Wondoan in Queensland’s south west, has started sending small amounts of electricity to the National Electricity Market.
The “first glimmers of output” from the solar farm were recorded this month by Global-Roam’s Paul McArdle, and charted in the NEMReview graph below, some 20 months after construction kicked off on the project in February 2020.
The troubled project has been delayed by a contracting dispute that first hit the news in February of this year, when around 230 workers were abruptly told to cease work and immediately leave the project.
The Electrical Trades Union, and smaller sub-contractors, blamed the problem on a dispute over payments between the main EPC contractor, the Indian-based Sterling and Wilson, and the Perth-based Davis Contracting.
A month later, the main contracting group building Gangarri appointed its own subsidiary to continue work on the project after Davis Contracting filed for administration.
At the end of April, the Australian Energy Market Operator named Gangarri as one of four new solar farms to have successfully been registered as new generators on the National Electricity Market.
Now that the project is finally starting to power up, it can get to work generating renewable energy to power the natural gas processing plants of Shell’s QGC business in Queensland.