Investment by the threatened Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will triple Australia’s large scale solar production after the agency announced the results of its latest solar round.
ARENA, which faces losing $1 billion in funding under legislation now before Federal Parliament, will invest $92 million investment in 12 new solar power plant, six plants in Queensland, five in New South Wales and one at Cervantes in Western Australia.
ARENA said that once constructed the plants will increase Australia’s large-scale solar capacity from 240 megawatts to 720 megawatts, providing enough energy to power 150,000 average Australian homes.
The agency said the projects were also expected to unlock almost $1 billion of commercial investment and boost regional Australian economies.
The largest plant will be built on Queensland’s Darling Downs, and will be able to generate up 110 megawatts of power.
Other solar locations in Queensland include Dalby, Longreach, Oakey, Kidston, Collinsville and the Whitsundays.
Construction on the Kidston plant, a 50MW hybrid project which will combine with a hydro generation facility in a disused gold mine, will begin early next year.
The five locations in New South Wales include Parkes, Manildra, Griffith, Dubbo and Glen Innes.