WIRSOL Energy has reached financial close for the construction of the Wemen Solar Farm in Victoria and the Clermont Solar Farm in Queensland.
The projects are being financed on a fully merchant basis with a long-term debt facility from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and equity provided from WIRSOL’s parent WIRCON, headquartered in Germany.
Both projects have been contracted to RCR Tomlinson for the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) buildout and longer-term operation and management contracts, with asset management contracted to CWP Renewables.
The construction of the Wemen and Clermont projects will start in January 2018 and are scheduled for connection to the grid in late 2018.
These two projects, combined with the three WIRSOL projects currently under construction – the Whitsunday, Hamilton and Gannawarra Solar Farms – position WIRSOL as the leader in solar power within Australia.
The CEFC has provided debt finance for the five WIRSOL projects, reflecting its commitment to accelerate the development of large-scale solar in Australia.
Managing Director of WIRSOL, Mark Hogan, said he was delighted that WIRSOL is now firmly positioned as the leading fully integrated investor, owner and developer of solar farms in Australia.
“Sustainable Energy Research Analytics (SERA) recently provided an insight into the solar market which indicates that we have circa 20 per cent market share,” Mr Hogan said.
“Whilst we do not drive ourselves on market share, as we have an internal goal of deploying one gigawatt of solar by 2020, it is nevertheless encouraging that we are making such traction in relatively short timelines.
“We plan on continuing our success with the next five large-scale solar projects totalling 470MWp that are in development with our joint venture partner, Renew Estate.”
CEFC Large-Scale Solar Lead, Monique Miller, said the projects contribute to the ongoing development of Australia’s critical energy infrastructure.
“We are pleased our commitment of $207 million as sole debt financier to the Wemen and Clermont solar farms will enable WIRSOL to begin construction on the two projects as early as January 2018, while the company continues to secure offtake agreements,” Ms Miller said.