Innovative region goes live

September 1, 2017

Innovative region goes live

We’re not just talking about game-changing projects here on our Sunshine Coast, we’re delivering them – our Sunshine Coast Solar Farm, a project unmatched in this country, is now switched on and producing power for the electricity network.

The Sunshine Coast Solar Farm is a very real and tangible demonstration of our council’s commitment that the Sunshine Coast will be Australia’s most sustainable region – healthy, smart and creative.

Our council is the first in Australia to develop a 15 megawatt, utility scale, grid connected solar farm.

It is the largest solar farm built in south-east Queensland, the second largest in the state, the first solar farm connected to Energex’s 33KV grid in south-east Queensland and it is the first solar farm in Australia to operate at 1500 Volts DC, which means it can operate more efficiently.

Of more historic importance is the fact that we will become the first government in mainland Australia that is offsetting 100 per cent of its entire electricity consumption with energy from a renewable source.

While others are still debating the merits of achieving a 50 per cent renewable energy target, or less in some cases, we have got on with the job and will now exceed that.
That is something that our residents can be rightfully proud of. You can also be pleased that the solar farm will save ratepayers $22 million over the next 30 years on the operating costs of council, a saving that would not have been possible if we had continued business as usual.

To make that perfectly clear, the solar farm will pay for itself and then contribute another $22 million in savings to council’s electricity costs.

A project of this size does not happen without the input of many. Thank you to everyone who has made a contribution, with a special acknowledgment to the solar farm’s neighbours who have always taken a great interest in the project and were patient with us during the construction phase – you have all been part of a wonderful, forward thinking and innovative journey for our region.

For more information on the solar farm, including live data, go to sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/Environment/Sunshine-Coast-Solar-Farm

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