WA, UK team announce $200m big solar pipeline for Australia

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WA-based Stellata Energy and UK investment group Ingenious to build 120MW solar farm in Merredin, as first of $200m pipeline of big solar projects.

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Western Australian large-scale solar start-up Stellata Energy has joined forces with UK based renewables investment specialist, Ingenious, to build what they say is a $200 million pipeline of solar farms across Australia, starting with a flagship 120MW ground-mounted project in their home state.

rsz_solar-farm_rw_smallThe companies said in a join announcement on Tuesday that they were seeking approval to build a 120MW ground-mounted solar plant in the regional town of Merredin, roughly half way between Perth and Kalgoorlie.

The partnership signals the arrival of yet another European investor into the Australian market, in the rush to meet the remainder of the 2020 renewable energy target as technology costs continue to fall.

Stellata, which has been around for roughly one year, says it is well placed to deliver large-scale solar in Western Australia, with an executive team with extensive previous experience developing more than 600MW of ground-mounted and rooftop solar across Europe.

Ingenious, meanwhile, has raised and deployed more than £9 billion, including £500 million in renewables projects across the UK and Ireland, the companies said.

Western Australia, having laid claim to the nation’s first large-scale solar plant in 2012, has added little to no new big solar capacity since then, although it has several new projects at various stages of the development pipeline, including a 10MW solar plant planned for Northam by Carnegie Clean Energy, the 30MW Byford solar project near Perth, and the 30MW expansion of Australia’s first solar farm –  the 10MW Greenough River.

“As a West Australian company, we are very excited to be partnering with Ingenious in our quest to bring utility scale solar power to our state,” said Stellate director Troy Santen.

“Our collaboration will drive forward the development of solar PV projects, as well as the creation of jobs in local communities.”

Ingenious infrastructure managing director, Sebastian Speight, said the two companies had worked together successfully before, and were keen to join forces in the Australian market.

“Australia has huge potential to benefit from solar energy, due to its geographical positioning and high levels of irradiation, and we are confident that Stellata can fully capture the rewards this technology can offer,” Speight said.

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6 Comments
  1. Chris Drongers 2 years ago

    Sunbrilliance had better settle financial close for their 100MW Cunderdin solar farm qick smart. The power line to the south west and to Perth can take only so much juice (200MW?) – Stellata solar 100MW, Carnegie Northam solar 10MW, Colgar wind farm 200MW, Sunbrillance solar 100MW.
    Add potentially 200 MW wind at Kulin and up to 100 MW wind at Kojonup and the power line is getting clogged.

    • Alistair Spong 2 years ago

      Im not sure how you have figured that ? Collie is in the SW and a major generation hub of GW capacity, and surely several lines are in play across the SWIS . To the east is Kulin , Merredin, cunderdin & Northam being closish to Perth,but also with 100s of kms between them running NTH/STH , Kojunup is off toward Albany and with wind and gas generation pre existing in the area the infrastructure should be ok ?… And Colgar wind is right next to merredin so adding solar should be complimentary to the grid ?

      • Chris Drongers 2 years ago

        I understand Merredin is on the newish 220kV line from Collie to Kalgoorlie – this line runs close to Kulin so could pick up another major wind farm mooted there (same Albany doctor wind system as Colgar). Kojonup is different line but Albany could be
        largely self-sufficient so output would head north.
        Mainline Merredin Perth is one (partly twinned) 220 kV
        Overloading all lines would be difficult and episodic most could happen if all solar and wind opportunities used.
        What MW could flow Merredin Perth given lines and Perth switchyard?

        • Michael Dufty 2 years ago

          Why assume it would go to Perth. They could supply Kalgoorlie first, which would presumably also reduce load on the line from Perth.

    • Alastair Leith 2 years ago

      Collgar is already on capacity restricted terms I believe too. Up to the AEMO if they export or curtail. Maybe they’ll all be looking at storage soon, or perhaps the Government will open an office of renewable energy to plan and upgrade the links as required for new RE generation.

  2. GlennM 2 years ago

    Within a few hours of Finkels copout….These multiple announcements are why Finkel is irrelevant. Unfortunately for Australian citizens the transition will be rough, angry, painful and in the end RE will win. A bit like rugby really, there are ups, downs, pain and in the end the All Blacks win…

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