The University of Queensland has become the first university in the world to have all its power come from its own renewable energy asset, with the opening of its $125 million, 64MW solar farm at Warwick.
Up to 100 jobs were supported during the 15 months for construction of the solar farm, with six ongoing operation and maintenance jobs supported for the life of the project and a facility manager based at the site full time.
The Warwick Solar Farm will support the research and development of innovative new energy solutions such as emerging battery energy storage and hydrogen conversion technologies.
The project marks a major global renewable energy title for Queensland, adding to its widespread uptake of household solar rooftops.
Over the past five years, 39 large-scale renewable energy projects have commenced operations or are financially committed, creating 5,700 jobs in construction.
Queensland now has 6,600MW of large-scale renewable generation either operational or committed.
Queensland State Development Minister, Kate Jones, said backing the state’s renewable energy sector was an important part of the QUeensland Government’s plan for economic recovery from COVID-19.
“This is about driving down emissions, putting downward pressure on power prices and creating jobs,” Ms Jones said.
Queensland Energy Minister, Dr Anthony Lynham, said the solar farm was the latest addition to Queensland’s existing suite of renewable energy generation projects.
“Our renewable energy revolution is rolling out, providing jobs and lower power prices for Queenslanders,” Dr Lynham said.
“We are forecast to reach 20 per cent renewable generation this year and on target to reach our commitment to 50 per cent by 2030.
“Our publicly-owned clean energy generator CleanCo will continue this growth with its remit to bring on an extra 1000 megawatts of clean energy by 2025.”