Australia’s soon-to-be largest wind farm is already propelling power on Queensland’s Western Downs, with almost 50 turbines now feeding energy into the National Electricity Market.
Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham today joined AGL to inspect the first group of towering turbines to come online, only a year after first breaking ground at Coopers Gap.
“Standing 180 meters high, with blades 67 metres long, these turbines are an impressive force equipped to harness the renewable power of Queensland’s wind,” Dr Lynham said.
“Work is well underway to get all 123 planned turbines up and running early next year, which is bringing $850 million of investment, 200 construction jobs, and up to 20 ongoing operational jobs to the region.”
The Coopers Gap Wind Farm, 250 kilometres north-west of Brisbane between Dalby and Kingaroy, has a total capacity of 453 megawatts. It is the largest wind farm by capacity in Australia with enough energy to power 264,000 Australian homes.
All that power is delivered into the electricity grid via a new 275-kilovolt substation, built and run by Queensland’s publicly-owned transmission operator Powerlink.
“The Palaszczuk Government is putting the right policies in place to help deliver large-scale renewable projects like Coopers Gap,” Dr Lynham said.
“Solar is already massive in Queensland and wind is on the rise, with two operating wind farms at Windy Hill and Mt Emerald, two under construction including here at Coopers Gap and we’ve just announced that five wind farms have been shortlisted for the final stage of the Government’s Renewables 400 program.
“We’re well on track to reach our target of 50 percent renewable energy by 2030.”
AGL General Manager Development and Construction Dave Johnson said AGL looked forward to safely completing commissioning of Australia’s largest wind farm.
“We thank and greatly appreciate the continued support and cooperation of all key stakeholders such as the Queensland Government, the Western Downs and South Burnett councils and local landowners, which have been crucial in getting to this stage,” he said.
“We greatly appreciate the support and guidance of the Australian Energy Market Operator and Powerlink Queensland to finalise the grid connection and ensure the wind farm is safely commissioned.
“A significant proportion of the investment in this project from AGL and the Powering Australian Renewables Fund has been spent with local businesses and contractors.”
Queensland has more than 2400 megawatts of large‑scale renewable energy capacity operating already. Almost 900 megawatts more of large-scale renewable capacity is currently financially committed or under construction.
Together, these projects represents more than $5 billion in capital investment and more than 4500 constructions jobs in regional Queensland.