Neoen Secures Planning Approval to Build €1.95 Billion Solar+Wind+Storage Project in Australia

The hybrid project is contingent on the construction of a 900km interconnector which will transmit electricity between New South Wales and South Australia, where the project is based

The South Australian government has granted planning approval to French renewable energy manufacturer, Neoen to build a large-scale hybrid renewable project in the state’s Goyder region. The project will include around 1200MW wind energy and 600MW solar energy backed up by 900MW battery storage. It is estimated to cost Neoen €1.95 billion in planning and construction. Neoen Australia’s Managing Director Louis de Sambucy stated that the company is confident of starting construction early next year. 

Electricity lines along the proposed route for the interconnector between SA and NSW

Electricity lines along the proposed route for the interconnector between SA and NSW, Credit: Project EnergyConnect website

One of the most exciting features of the hybrid project is that if it is connected to a planned interconnector, the renewable energy generated by the plant could be used to power thousands of homes and businesses in New South Wales, the neighbouring state. Currently, a 330kV interconnector called Project EnergyConnect is being developed by TransGrid and ElectraNet, two transmission operators based in Australia. Once complete, this interconnector will transmit electricity over a distance of 900 km between South Australia with New South Wales. 

Premier Andrew Marshall, leader of the South Australian government, said: “Gaining planning approval for the project is a massive vote of confidence in the state government’s energy policies, which have already resulted in energy savings of AU$269 every year for the average bill payer.”

Dan van Holst Pellekaan, South Australian Minister for Energy and Mining, said: “This approval means hundreds of jobs can be created in regional South Australia, boosting the economy as we recover from the global coronavirus pandemic.”

Neoen Australia’s Managing Director, Louis de Sambucy said: “The Goyder Renewables Zone is a landmark project that will not only provide a significant boost to the South Australian economy but will also support its transition to a renewables-led future. We’re very appreciative of the support that the project received from [the] Goyder community, local Council and the South Australian Government. [The project] will not only support South Australia in reaching its goal of net 100% renewables by 2030, but it will also deliver income security to farmers, as well as jobs to the Goyder region.”