Far North Queensland is set to get another wind farm, after a 100MW project got the green light from the state government for construction on the Cape York Peninsula.
ASX listed renewable energy developer Windlab said on Wednesday that its Lakeland Wind Farm would be built around 60km south of Cooktown in Queensland, after being approved by the Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning.
The project will include up to 30 wind turbines as well as electrical infrastructure and will generate enough power to to supply more than 50,000 homes – around the number of households in Cook Shire, Mareeba Shire, Tablelands Region, and northern Cairns suburbs combined, the company said
Windlab has been busy in FNQ – itself a hive of large-scale renewable energy activity – rolling out the first phase of its world-leading wind, solar, and battery storage hybrid project, that will eventually become the 1200MW Kennedy Energy Park.
Kennedy Phase 1 is a 60MW wind, solar and storage hybrid plant located near Hughenden – a location chosen for its high and consistent wind resource using Windlab’s CSIRO developed proprietary Windscape technology.
In September, Windlab secured a 10-year agreement with the Queensland government-owned CS Energy to buy both the renewable energy and some of the large-scale generation certificates (LGCs) produced from Kennedy phase 1.
Wind power has come rather slowly to the Sunshine State, but the sector is now gathering speed and scale. Just last month, Australian renewable energy company Lacour lodged a development application to build a massive wind farm of up to 195 turbines, and potentially around 800MW in installed capacity, in Queensland’s Isaac Region.
And in the Darling Downs, construction has kicked off on Australia’s largest wind development, the AGL Energy owned 453MW Coopers Gap Wind Farm midway between Kingaroy and Dalby.
Coopers Gap, which is about 250km west of Brisbane, will produce around 1,510,000MWh of renewable energy a year – enough to power more than 260,000 average Australian homes when fully operational in mid-2019.
On the Lakeland project, Windlab CEO Roger Price said the company had worked closely with the department and local community to optimise the wind farm’s design and to accommodate the property development plans of a project neighbour.
The $200 million project will bring significant investment to the region and is expected to create approximately 200 jobs during construction, which is expected to take around one year.
“Lakeland Wind Farm is an exceptional project and we eagerly anticipate starting construction this year,” Price said.
“Working with the community is always key for us; we are therefore particularly pleased that we found a solution that aligns neighbour plans, planning code and project requirements.
“With construction of Kennedy Energy Park (Stage I) near Hughenden now in full swing and development of Stage II on the way, Windlab and North Queensland are contributing to securing affordable, diverse and reliable electricity for the benefit of all Queenslanders,” he said.