When completed, AGLs Nyngan solar plant will have capacity of 102 MW, bolstering AGLs existing credentials as the largest ASX-listed owner, operator and developer of renewable energy generation in Australia. In the last decade AGL has invested more than $3 billion in renewable energy projects.
During an inspection of the 250 hectare site today, Group General Manager Merchant Energy, Anthony Fowler, said he was pleased with how construction was progressing at what will be Australias largest utility-scale solar PV plant.
A project of this magnitude has never been done in Australia before and together with project partners First Solar, we have reached the installation of the millionth module while remaining on track and on budget. Its a credit to everyone working on the project.
Mr Fowler was joined at the $290 million Nyngan solar plant by the Minister for Resources and Energy, the Hon Anthony Roberts MP, Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) Chairman, Mr Greg Bourne, Bogan Shire Deputy Mayor Cr Jim Hamstead, First Solar as well as other state and local government officials and project employees.
In total, 1.35 million advanced thin-film solar PV modules will be installed. If placed end-to-end, the modules would measure more than 1,600 kilometres, or the equivalent distance of Nyngan to Uluru as the crow flies, said Mr Fowler.
First generation from Nyngan Solar Plant is expected to occur by next month and the plant will be fully operational by July 2015.
Once operational, the Nyngan Solar Plant will produce enough renewable electricity annually to supply more than 33,000 homes.
The Nyngan project has provided economic benefits for the regional community including employment, which during the peak of construction reached more than 250 people on site. Business in the local Nyngan area and wider Orana region have also benefited from local procurement and contracts associated with the construction of this project.
AGL is constructing the Nyngan Solar Plant along with the 53 MW Broken Hill Solar Plant with $166.7 million funding from ARENA and $64.9 million from the NSW Government. The two plants are being constructed in partnership with local councils, local communities, and First Solar.