X-Elio activates a 200 MW solar project in Australia – pv magazine International
The 200MW Blue Grass solar farm has been officially launched in the Australian state of Queensland, with Spanish developer X-Elio saying the AUD 215 million ($145.3 million) project has reached full commercial operation.
X-Elio has activated its first major project in Australia and its largest to date, with the Spain-based solar developer confirming that the 200MW Blue Grass solar farm near the Queensland town of Chinchilla is now online .
Belinda Fan, country manager for X-Elio in Australia, said the completion of the project strengthens the company’s position in the Australian market. She said he also supported the state government’s recent announcement renewable energy goals generate 70% of its energy needs from renewable sources by 2032 and 80% by 2035.
“The Blue Grass Solar Farm is one of 50 large-scale renewable energy projects in Queensland, coming online at an opportune time to help support the state government’s clean energy ambitions,” a- she declared. “We would like to view this project as a small but important step in the state’s march to net zero.”
The 200 MW solar power plant, located 14 kilometers west of Chinchilla in the planned Darling Downs Renewable Energy Zone (REZ), is expected to supply around 420 GWh of 100% renewable energy per year. This is enough to power 80,000 homes and offset approximately 320,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
Electricity generated at the facility will be supplied to the National Electricity Market (NEM) via the existing 132 kV Chinchilla-Columboola transmission line, which is operated by Queensland transmission network provider Powerlink.
The project is backed by power purchase agreements (PPAs) with Queensland government-owned power producer Stanwell, an Australian electricity retailer. ZEN energyand US software company Salesforce. Stanwell signed an agreement with X-Elio for the offtake of 49 MW from the Blue Grass solar park.
Salesforce has signed a deal for 25% of the facility’s output, more than enough renewable energy to match its electricity consumption for all of its Australian operations. The PPA is his first renewable energy offtake agreement and Salesforce Australia and New Zealand CEO Pip Marlow said the launch of the Blue Grass Solar Farm is a milestone in the company’s sustainability journey,
“Salesforce has zero net residual emissions and achieved 100% renewable energy for its global operations in 2021,” she said. “Projects like Blue Grass Solar Farm are essential to our vision of a net zero world.”
X-Elio CEO Lluis Noguera said the Blue Grass solar farm marks the opening phase of the company’s long-term interest in the Australian market, where it continues to seek new growth opportunities.
“Australia is a key strategic market for X-Elio and our Blue Grass solar park will spearhead our continued expansion along Australia’s east coast, with additional projects planned for New Wales. South and Victoria,” he said.
X-Elio has announced its intention to build a 300 MW solar farm and a battery energy storage system near Wagga Wagga, New South Wales. The 120MW Forest Glen and 80MW Wunghnu solar farms in New South Wales and Victoria, respectively, are also among more than 500MW of projects X-Elio has under development in Australia.
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