Golden Plain Shire offers significant opportunities for renewable energy development, particularly for wind farms. The Shire is the ideal location for renewable energy production, with vast tracts of largely unencumbered land, attractive climatic conditions, and close proximity to the Victorian power grid, workforce and the Port of Geelong.
Wind farm development in the Shire includes an operational wind farm at Mt Mercer, State Government approval to build a wind farm at Berrybank, and an application for a planning permit has been lodged with the State Government to build a large wind farm near Rokewood.
Mt Mercer Wind Farm
In 2014, Meridian Energy commissioned the Mt Mercer Wind Farm. The farm has 64 wind turbines and the capacity to produce 131MW of power (enough energy to power a city the size of Ballarat).
Berrybank Wind Farm
Global Power Generation Australia has State Government planning approval to build 79 wind turbines at Berrybank. The wind farm will be located in southern Golden Plains Shire, and Corangamite Shire. It will have the capacity to produce 277MW of power, and will see 41 wind turbines built in Golden Plains Shire, and 38 built in Corangamite Shire.
The project will be built over two stages, with stage one seeing 24 turbines built in Golden Plains by September 2020. Stage one will be a $276 million project, and is expected to create 213 full-time jobs.
Berrybank Wind Farm Development Pty Ltd was a successful tenderer for the State Government's Victorian Renewable Energy Target Reverse Auction, which saw the wind farm awarded a 15 year power supply agreement with the State Government.
Golden Plains Wind Farm
In early 2019 the Victorian Minister for Planning approved one the largest wind farms in the southern hemisphere near Rokewood in the centre of Golden Plains Shire. The proposal will see construction of up to 228 wind turbines with enough energy to power approximately 500,000 homes.
The project still requires approval of an Environmental Effects Statement by the Federal Government, and the provision of a number of supporting plans required by the planning permit including an Environmental Management Plan and a Brolga Monitoring and Compensation Plan.
Depending on the timing of approval of supporting plans, construction may occur from late 2021.
West Wind Energy are the proponent for this project.
For more information on renewable energy opportunities in Golden Plains Shire, contact Council's Economic Development Team on 5220 7111 or email [email protected]