The six successful wind and solar projects announced under the Victorian Government’s reverse auction scheme yesterday will deliver a massive boost for jobs and investment in regional Victoria while driving down power prices, according to the Australian Clean Energy Council (CEC).
The auction, part of the Victorian Renewable Energy Targets (VRET), was initially expected to deliver at least 650MW of renewable energy. That goal has been smashed, with the auction instead delivering 928 MW of renewable energy – almost 45 percent more power than originally anticipated.
Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Energy Lily D’Ambrosio today visited the Ararat Wind Farm to announce the six successful projects that will produce enough electricity to power 646,273 households.
Together, these projects will generate $1.1 billion of economic investment in regional Victoria and create more than 900 jobs, including 270 apprenticeships and traineeships.
The six projects are as follows:
Berrybank Wind Farm west of Geelong, which will produce 180MW
Carwarp Solar Farm south of Mildura, which will produce 121.6MW
Cohuna Solar Farm north-west of Echuca, which will produce 34.2MW
Dundonnell Wind Farm north-east of Warrnambool, which will produce 336MW
Mortlake South Wind Farm south of Mortlake, which will produce 157.5MW
Winton Solar Farm near Benalla, which will produce 98.8MW
The 928MW of power produced by these projects is expected to drive a 16 per cent reduction in Victoria’s electricity sector greenhouse gas emissions by 2034/35.
Clean Energy Council Chief Executive Kane Thornton said the Victorian Government’s support for these projects and a new commitment to 10,000 home battery systems were great examples of political leadership that would drive down electricity costs and put power back into the hands of all Victorians.
“The Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) is providing long-term certainty for investors that is resulting in the lowest cost renewable energy projects” said Mr Thornton. “Combined with the recent announcement to support rooftop solar and today’s commitment to 10,000 home battery systems, it is clear the Victorian Government is taking a leadership role on energy policy”.
Thornton added that renewable energy such as solar and wind wind is now the lowest cost power generation that can be built today. As coal-fired power plants continue to retire from the system, the 928 MW of new renewable energy which will be built under the Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET) will help to push down power prices while creating hundreds of regional jobs and $1.1 billion of investment.
The Victorian reverse auction scheme is a well-designed policy that will ultimately save consumers money on their bills while providing much-needed certainty for the investors in these three wind farms and three large-scale solar plants.
Reducing power bills and emissions while securing the reliability of the power supply is achievable, and states like Victoria are showing it can be done with a mix of policies that are ambitious but achievable.