The Western Australian Government has awarded grants worth over $2.6 million to two Goldfields-based projects in the first round of the state’s $19 million Clean Energy Future Fund.

The projects will create up to 400 jobs and generate 77,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity each year – enough to power 15,000 houses and save 53,000 tonnes of carbon emissions, which is equal to taking 17,000 cars off the road. The successful projects are: 

  • Nomadic Energy ($1 million) who will install 5MW of modular, re-deployable solar panels at Saracen’s Carosue Dam gold mine. The flexibility to redeploy the solar panels removes a key barrier to using green energy at mine sites, where a mine may cease operating before the cost of the solar panels has been recovered
  • ResourcesWA ($1.6 million) who will install 30MW of solar power at the Homestead mine site in the Goldfields, supplying power to the Paddington Mill and Mungari Mill sites and batteries at each of the mills (10MW and 5MW respectively, each with one hour’s storage) to reduce the impact of outages and support Western Power’s local substation

Projects to reduce the emissions of significant facilities in regional areas were prioritised in the first round, with the State Government funding up to 25 per cent of eligible project costs.

Western Australian Environment Minister, Stephen Dawson, said, “The Clean Energy Future Fund is an important part of the McGowan Government’s commitment to achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and supporting our State’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan.

“Nomadic Energy and ResourceWA were chosen for the high value they provide, their capacity to reduce emissions, potential for wider adoption, innovation and financial viability.

“These benefits will only increase further as these technologies are more widely adopted, and will also grow exponentially as the fund continues to support new, innovative clean energy projects.”

Western Australian Energy Minister, Bill Johnston, said, “The McGowan Government’s Clean Energy Future Fund is evidence of its commitment to supporting innovative, new technologies and opportunities for Western Australia.

“Not only does the fund assist in developing clean energy projects, it has helped create jobs, which is increasingly important for our State’s economic recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“With over 385 construction and operational jobs expected to be created during the life of the two projects, it’s clear that clean energy industries are an important source of future employment opportunities, particularly in regional WA.”

Applications for round 2 of the Clean Energy Future Fund will open on Monday 25 January, with a total of up to $16 million available in the fund.

Round 2 will prioritise clean energy projects that reduce emissions, create jobs, improve security and reliability of supply, or support the replacement of diesel use.  

It will also prioritise projects that support decarbonisation of existing industry, develop new low carbon industries or enhance energy efficiency in manufacturing or the built environment.

The fund, administered by the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation with support from Energy Policy WA, launched in April 2020.

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