The Nyngan solar PV plant – part of the $440 million AGL solar project, which is supported by $166.7 million from ARENA and $64.9 million from the NSW Government – has received the go ahead to feed its full capacity of solar power into the grid.
According to the press release by ARENA, Australia’s largest solar photovoltaic (PV) plant is now feeding 102 MW of renewable energy into the National Electricity Market, enough to power 33,000 homes annually.
“This new Australian record sends a strong signal to the energy industry that utility-scale solar PV plants can be constructed on time and on budget,” said ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht.
“ARENA is pleased to support this landmark project, which will greatly increase market confidence in future solar PV projects, bringing down the cost of planning, construction and finance.”
A total of 1.36 million solar panels were successfully installed at the Nyngan site. The final solar panel was installed two months ago, with representatives from ARENA, AGL and First Solar attending the celebration. Minister for Industry, Resources and Energy Anthony Roberts and NSW Minister for the Environment Mark Speakman were also present.
“The Nyngan project has provided economic benefits for the community including employment, which during the peak of construction reached more than 250 people on site. Businesses in Nyngan, and the wider Orana region, have also benefited from local procurement and contracts associated with the project’s construction,” reads ARENA’s press release.
First Solar was contracted to build the power stations using its thin film PV technology and maintain the facilities for an initial five year period following construction.
The Nyngan array will undergo final commissioning and testing throughout the month, becoming fully operational in July.