Cohuna Solar Farm Commences Construction

The 34.2 MW Cohuna Solar Farm has commenced construction in Victoria after being chosen as one of the three winning tenders from the Victorian renewable energy auction.

Cohuna Solar Farm | Timeline, Investment, Jobs.

The 34.2MW Cohuna solar farm will be located in the shire of Gannawarra and will be built by Enel Green Power.

The solar project will consist of 87,000 bifacial modules mounted on single-axis trackers and will be connected to the grid via the Cohuna Zone Substation. Enel Green Power are investing ~US$42 million (AU$59 million) into the project, expected to commence operations by the end of this year.

Once completed, the project is expected to generate 77 GWh per year. The solar farm will be built in conjunction with local developer Leeson Group.

“Since EGP made its entry into the Australian renewable sector, we have already made great strides to expand our footprint in this competitive market,” said Antonio Cammisecra, Head of Enel Green Power (who also own the Bungala Solar Farm, Australia’s largest online solar farm), in comments repeated in PV Magazine.

Whilst the Cohuna Solar Farm’s output is a little more modest, it’s still an important step forwards for solar power in Australia and the Victorian Renewable Energy Target (VRET). Under the VRET, six projects will be developed (three wind and three solar). With these projects the Victorian government hopes to source 25% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2020, 40% by 2025 and 50% by 2030.

If you’d like to read the press release from Enel please click here

If you’d like to know more about the developer, here’s a blurb about their company taken from their website:

Enel Green Power, the global renewable energy business line of the Enel Group, is dedicated to the development and operation of renewables across the world, with a presence in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and Oceania. Enel Green Power is a global leader in the green energy sector with a managed capacity of over 43 GW across a generation mix that includes wind, solar, geothermal and hydropower, and is at the forefront of integrating innovative technologies into renewable power plants.

The other two winning projects which won the Victorian renewable energy auction are:

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Australian Solar Power could provide 30% of energy requirements by 2030.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) released a report on Monday which postulates that we could reach 30% of our electricity requirements through PV solar by 2030.  The 2030 Emissions Reduction Climate Change target is to reduce emissions by 26-28% (on 2005 levels) by 2030. If 30% of our energy is met through solar, we should also have a significant amount generated by wind (of the projected ~12GW of renewable energy we will have by end of 2018, 5.4GW of this will be wind power). This should put Australia in the driver’s seat in terms of meeting and even surpassing our emissions targets. Australian solar power is on an exciting and world-leading path.

Australian Solar Power ARENA
ARENA (Australian Renewable Energy Agency)

Australian Solar Power Subsidies from ARENA

According to RenewEconomy, ARENA still has $800m in its budget to help fund renewable energy in Australia. At a function in Melbourne on Monday, ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht discussed how they will help over the next three years and advised that they are currently focusing on four main areas:

  1. Battery Storage / Grid Stability and Reliability
  2. Solar PV Innovation
  3. Raising Energy Productivity
  4. Exporting Renewable Energy

The main focus of ARENA’s budget will be on storage/grid stability and this is expected to account for around 50% of the remaining $800m over the next three years. Frischknecht was quoted as saying Australia is well on the way to a robust renewable energy economy – citing that our journey towards an “affordable and reliable” renewable energy grid is successful so far.

Ivor Frischknecht ARENA
ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht addresses stakeholders (source:

Frischknecht also discussed the future of solar technology (both panels and storage): “This is the best time ever to be in this industry. It’s the most exciting time. If you look at the changes from 1980-2005 and compare to what has happened since, it is just breathtaking. And it is getting faster.” Noting that 75% of our current energy output is exported (via coal and LNG), he said that ARENA are exploring ‘vectors’ such as hydrogen, ammonia, and commodity refining/export as potential ways for Australia to make a profit from a robust renewable energy platform.




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