AGL Energy has developed two large-scale solar photovoltaic power plants in the Far West region.
AGL Energy, Australia’s largest ASX-listed investor in renewable energy, developed two large-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants in conjunction with the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and the NSW Government, which began operating in 2016.
The Broken Hill solar plant has a capacity of 53 megawatts, producing enough electricity annually to meet the needs of around 20,000 Australian homes. The solar plant in Nyngan has a capacity of 102 megawatts, enough to power around 40,000 homes. ARENA provided A$166.7 million in funding and the NSW Government provided A$64.9 million.
The new energy from these solar plants will result in the displacement of electricity that would otherwise need to be sourced from the grid at a much higher emissions intensity, resulting in an annual saving of 109,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions at Broken Hill and 195,720 tonnes at Nyngan. This is the equivalent of taking at least 76,000 cars off the road every year.
The Far West is an ideal location for future solar power developments with one of the highest levels of solar radiation in NSW. The presence of nearby mines and the Broken Hill township ensures reliable energy demand.
The Broken Hill solar plant has an efficient connection into the electrical grid through an existing substation located near the plant. At the time of its construction, the Nyngan plant was the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. The plants were sold in November 2016 to the Powering Australian Renewables Fund (PARF), a joint initiative between AGL and QIC (on behalf of its clients) to develop utility scale renewable energy assets in Australia.