Unpredictable power outages will likely become a thing of the past for North Queensland residents (Cooktown and Lakeland Districts) after the $42.5 million solar and storage project is now connected to the grid. The project will produce enough electricity to power the equivalent of more than 3000 homes day and night.
The construction took about eight months providing additional employment to the region with permanent jobs to stay at the station.
“Lakeland Downs – it’s an agricultural powerhouse – so for our region to have that green energy alongside that is a nice balance, which is what we’re all about here,” said the Cook Shire Mayor Peter Scott to the Cairns Post in 2017.
An aerial view of the Lakeland Solar and Storage Project in Far North Queensland in 2017 (abc.net.au)
Map of the Lakeland region in Far North Queensland compared to the continent Australia
Conergy - the company behind the technology and development - flicks the switch on Australia’s first grid-connected, utility-scale solar and battery facility in Far North Queensland – the 13MW Lakeland Solar & Storage Project on Queensland’s Cape York Peninsula – has started feeding electricity into the grid, providing certainty of summer power supply for Far North Queenslanders.
If measured by already developed renewable energy sectors worldwide, Australia had a record-breaking two years in the construction of major solar projects and the trend is predicted to continue. ARENA (Australian Renewable Energy Agency) is playing a vital role supporting fundings for projects that will make large-scale solar photovoltaics (PV) more competitive. (https://arena.gov.au/funding/programs/advancing-renewables-program/large-scale-solar-photovoltaics-competitive-round/)
With many more similar projects planned, researchers are starting to project that Australia will see a massive increase in large-scale solar energy with implications for everyone across the nation and a boost to the economy providing many more jobs for the future.
So there is hope: our beautiful country with free sun all year round will one day in the future be well-ahead of the game and have their own “World’s Largest Solar Power Park”!
📽 World's Largest Solar Power Park 2000 MW is now in Karnataka India
ARENA - Australian Renewable Energy Agency
Renew Economy, 2018 (viewed 20.02.2018)