Two new energy projects for district

26th May 2020

A proposal to build a 5MW solar farm near Guyra is currently being assessed by the Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) and a new wind farm in the Ben Lomond area is in the early stages of development.
Providence Asset Group (Providence) is seeking development consent from Armidale Regional Council to develop a solar farm at 175 Glen Ross Road, Guyra. Plans for the development were submitted in April for the solar photovoltaic (PV) farm project which includes approximately 5MW grid-connected solar PV installation.
Once established, the solar farm will be connected to the Essential Energy grid at Guyra Substation. The proposed development is valued at around $7m and will see an estimated 14,280 solar PV panels erected.
Other electrical generation infrastructure is proposed on the site including 2 x 2.5MW inverter system supported by a Medium Voltage Power Station transformer and switch gear.
The PV arrangement will consist of 170 ground-mounted single-axis trackers. During the construction period there is estimated to be up to 30 personnel on-site for up to 6 months.
New Zealand-owned renewables developer Meridian Energy Australia has raised plans to build a two-part 130MW wind plus battery storage project between Guyra and Glen Innes.
The proposed project, dubbed the Rangoon Energy Park, is being put to communities in the nearby villages of Ben Lomond and Glencoe, with a scoping report due to be lodged with the NSW Department of Planning, Industry, and Environment in June.
Meridian, whose parent company is the largest electricity generator in New Zealand, says the proposed Energy Park meets the NSW government’s criteria as State Significant Development (SSD) and will follow the SSD planning pathway.
According to details on the company website, the project would comprise two separate wind farms, Rangoon North and South, positioned alongside the New England Highway.
The wind farms would have a proposed combined total of around 23-26+ turbines, and would connect to the National Electricity Market via two substations to be built on-site.
Meridian says the proposed project’s Battery Energy Storage System – no size or capacity yet indicated – would be located at one or both of the two project substations.
The project is at the very early stages, with an Environmental Assessment not expected to be lodged with the state government until March next year.