Esco Pacific Pty Ltd has proposed construction of the Finley Solar Farm, 6km west of the township of Finley and 140km west of Albury.
Interested parties need to wait until Esco Pacific achieves DA approval hopefully late this year or early in the New Year.
The appointment of a head contractor will follow and the supplier engagement process will begin after the preferred EPC contractor has been completed.
If all goes according to plan the construction start date could be as soon as Quarter 3 2018 with a construction phase lasting 7-8 months.
The solar farm will cover an area of approximately 300 hectares and comprise approximately 500,000 solar photovoltaic modules (solar panels).
The panels will be installed on ground-mounted frames that will slowly track the daily horizontal movement of the sun.
The solar panels will generate direct current (‘DC’) electricity that will be inverted to alternating current (‘AC’) via containerised power conversion units. The power conversion units located within the site will feed AC electricity into an onsite power reticulation system before the power is centrally collected and dispatched to the local electricity distribution network via the TransGrid transmission network.
The project’s DA states its Capital Investment Value will be $150 million. However, the project website puts the figure at $170m.
The DA said the project will create 130 construction jobs and six operational positions. However, the later EIS puts those figures at 200 and four, respectively.
The main items to be established for the Project will include:
Up to 500,000 solar panels in regular arrays;
Metal mounting piles and frames;
Aboveground and underground DC cabling;
Central inverters, step up transformers, and switchgear;
Underground AC cabling;
Main step up transformer and associated equipment;
Internal vehicle access tracks;
Perimeter safety fencing and security system;
Supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) control systems;
Site office, staff amenities, and maintenance shed;
Water storage tanks;
Permanent staff and contractor car parking area;
Permanent all-weather access and access road;
Temporary site compound, lay-down area, and equipment storage areas during construction; and
Perimeter landscaping treatments (where required).
The EIS puts the construction period at nine months and indicates the lifespan of the project as 40 years.
The DA and EIS will be on public exhibition until October 22.
FINLEY SOLAR FARM
Status: Under assessment
Site: 6km west of the township of Finley and 140km west of Albury, in the Riverina region of NSW
CAPEX($AUD million): $101m – $250m
Proponent: Esco Pacific Pty Ltd
Employment – Construction: 200
Employment – Operation: 4
Lifespan (years): 40