The Victorian Government of Australia has kept aside $100 million to develop and construct a solar power producing facility in the North West part of the state.
The funding was set aside by the state under its Climate Change White Paper Action Plan and issued during July this year. The government grant is set aside in support of a bid made by TRUenergy, an energy building company to construct a 345 gWh per year plant over a 600 hectare site located at about 10 KM south of Mildura. The company is planning to utilize the services of Bovis Lend Lease for constructing the plant and complete it in four stages between the year 2012 and 2015.
John Brumby, Premier of Victoria, said that the investment is made to take advantage of the renewable energy potential of the state and it constitutes an important decision of the government to augment the electric power supply of the state through solar power. He added that under the existing action plan the state is obliged to reduce its emissions by 20% by the year 2020 and to increase its power production by utilizing solar energy to 5%. He added that TruEnergy’s project proposal was submitted under the Victorian Large Scale Solar Project and was chosen from a total of five such applications utilizing an independent tender format. He further said that the project when completed will provide enough electricity to light 60,000 houses every year and will provide 20 permanent jobs.
The government of Victoria has also declared a Solar Hubs Program to encourage community based solar power generations to produce 8.6 MW solar power by the year 2013. The state has set aside $5 million dollars as government grants to create up to 10 such hubs and each hub will receive $250,000 to one million dollars as support. The project envisaged to reduce carbon emissions will allow the formation of partnerships by community groups, local councils, financial organizations and others.