Queensland’s CleanCo calls for clean energy: 5 solar farms make shortlist for 400 MW reverse auction

Clean energy projects bid for CleanCo contracts in Queensland.

CleanCo, Queensland’s state-owned clean electricity generating and trading company, wants clean energy projects to bid for contracts in regional investment.

Ten renewable projects are short-listed. These include wind farms, commercial solar installations,  as well as hydroelectric power stations in Far North Queensland (FNQ).

CleanCo will provide up to 400 MW of new generation and storage when it begins trading in the National Electricity Market (NEM) on October 31 of this year.

Clean energy projects include solar battery storage

CleanCo will soon complete the government’s ‘Renewables 400’ reverse auction. CleanCo will seek binding bids from the 10 short-listed companies. It will then recommend projects to government early next year.

Clean energy projects bid for CleanCo contracts in Queensland

Queensland is harnessing and storing solar power to reach 50% renewables by 2030. Image: Queensland Government

It also takes the state closer to achieving Queensland’s Renewable Energy Target of 50 per cent by 2030.

Five solar farms with battery storage are included in CleanCo’s short-list of clean energy projects.

  • Majors Creek Solar Farm with battery storage at Woodstock.
  • Chinchilla Solar Farm with battery storage at Chinchilla.
  • Cape York Solar Storage facility at Lakeland, Far North Queensland.
  • Haughton Solar Farm with battery storage near Townsville.
  • Collinsvale North Solar facility with battery storage in the Whitsunday region.

Battery storage key to Queensland renewable growth

A large-scale Townsville storage facility powered by a 4 MW Tesla battery is Queensland’s first grid-scale battery clean energy project. Work will start at Bohle Plains in Townsville’s north in October.

The solar farm builds on the Palaszczuk Labor Government’s $386 million ‘Powering North Queensland Plan’. This focuses on developing domestic, commercial and utility-scale solar projects in the north of the state.

The government says energy storage is key to helping the state achieve its 50 per cent RET over the next decade.

Townsville is seen as ideal for battery storage projects because of its many rooftop solar power systems.  The new, grid-scale battery will also ease pressure on sub-stations while reducing energy prices for consumers.

Small-scale batteries high on resident shop-list

Meanwhile, in addition ot the larger clean energy projects, the annual ‘Queensland Household Energy Survey‘ found close to a third of homeowners want to install home batteries to boost their solar panels.

In addition, the Queensland Government’s home battery grants scheme is also encouraging more households to consider solar batteries like Tesla Powerwall 2 and Enphase.

This year’s survey showed:

  • 26% of Queensland households have solar installations.
  • 14% have battery storage (close to double since December 2018).
  • Regional Queenslanders are most likely to install solar panels and batteries.
  • In the Outback, 22% plan to install solar panels and 15% want batteries.