Mt Mercer 131MW Wind Farm Switched on in Victoria

The article was originally posted at Renew Economy. View the original here. A wind farm installed in Victoria by New Zealand renewables giant Meridian Energy is now fully operational and connected to the grid, after all 64 turbines went live … Continue reading Mt Mercer 131MW Wind Farm Switched on in Victoria

Pollie Watch: Will SA Liberals kill wind energy jobs, investment?

Screen Shot 2014-03-12 at 9.35.03 AMSouth Australia is national leader when it comes to renewable energy. Wind energy and more recently roof top solar has boomed in the state.  

With the state heading to the polls this weekend, many renewable energy observers are wondering how a change of government will affect South Australia’s incredible energy transition. 

Liberal party candidate for Frome, Kendall Jackson, in on the record supporting restrictions on wind farm developments:

In regards to wind farms, the Liberal team is supportive of our local communities and ensuring local farmers are not unnecessarily disadvantaged by power station development. We believe there should be adequate distance between peoples homes and wind turbines — five kilometres from towns and two kilometres from homes.

The “adequate distance” suggested by the Liberal party candidate are arbitrary. It makes no reference to objective factors such as noise standards, acoustic modelling, turbine type, community support or environment/biodiversity considerations. Continue reading “Pollie Watch: Will SA Liberals kill wind energy jobs, investment?”

RET Watch: Mt Mercer a RET success but future developments suffer

Meridian Energy Australia’s previously delayed Mount Mercer Wind Farm in Victoria nears completion as the forthcoming Renewable Energy Target (RET) review cools industry confidence.

ECO_Windfarm-600x064 wind turbines with a collective capacity of 131 megawatts will be added to the National Electricity Market by midyear thanks to Meridian’s $260 million dollar investment outside of Elaine, Victoria.

The project will result in carbon dioxide emissions reductions of more than 400,000 tonnes per annum, and once complete, according to The Courier, “will generate enough renewable energy to power almost 100,000 homes – or the whole of Ballarat”.

Thus far the development has created more than 250 temporary jobs since construction began in 2012, and will produce a further 20 permanent maintenance positions for the life of the farm. But whether or not such benefits will be able to spread elsewhere relies for now on the outcome of July’s 2014 RET review and any doubts it might seed. Continue reading “RET Watch: Mt Mercer a RET success but future developments suffer”

Hepburn Wind's two REpower 2.05MW turbines

Wind farms: two steps forward, one step back

Todays news has seen two wind farms getting the go-ahead, and one abandoned by its proponent.

Hepburn Wind's two REpower 2.05MW turbines
Hepburn Wind’s two 2.05MW REpower turbines

Giles Parkinson at Renew Economy reports on the Taralga wind farm in NSW:

CBD Energy said it has signed a power purchase agreement with TRUenergy that will allow construction of the 108MW Taralga wind farm to begin later this year – its first utility scale wind project in Australia.

(. . . )

The $250 million Taralga wind farm – which won approval only after a fierce court battle – had been in doubt about the failure of the AusChina joint venture that CBD Energy signed last year to take the project forward. However, CBD then took on the principal development role to secure the PPA and equity and financing partners. The PPA is a key element in gaining financing, and partners and the EPC contractor are expected to be announced soon.

And on the Mt Mercer project, proponent Meridian energy has announced it will begin construction in December 2012. A contract has been signed with turbine manufacturer REpower to supply the turbines. Continue reading “Wind farms: two steps forward, one step back”