Asia Pacific Agri-Corp have advised that they will spend $308m on a 78MW solar farm to create a solar powered abattoir in Gladstone, Queensland.
Solar powered abattoir
According to the manufacturer, Asia Pacific Agri-Corp, the project will cost $308m and will offset a significant proportion of the abattoir’s energy needs:
APAC managing director Daniel Daly was quoted by ABC News as explaining why Asia Pacific Agri-Corp decided this was the best option for their energy needs moving forwards:
“We have our own 78MW solar farm on the site, so we’re able to do behind the metre or through-the-fence power deals which keeps our costs controlled for the processing.
“There was also other costs associated with waste water and removal of waste water would be considerable … (so) we (will ) combine the surplus of power from the solar with the waste water into an onsite hydrogen plant.”
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, Cameron Dick, spoke about the project and how much of the abattoir’s electricity it’ll offset:
“Once fully operational this cutting-edge facility will be capable of processing 2,400 head of cattle per day ready to cater for growing demand for Australian beef,” Dick said in a statement.
“The development approval also provides for 95 hectares of solar panels, capable of generating 78 MW of electricity or almost one third of the sites total electricity needs. A further energy efficiency measure includes the development of an on-site 33MW hydrogen plant to service the abattoir’s boiler.”
Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher was also optimistic about hte project, which will deliver 308 construction and 335 operation jobs:
“This development will open up massive job increases for labourers in the Gladstone region by providing employment to dozens of non-trade occupations such as cattle workers, forklift drivers, and other processing workers,” he said.
Construction of the farm is expected to begin next May and finish up in 2021.
Commercial Solar Uptake
There’s been an abundance of commercial solar installations and uptake over the past 12 months – here are some of the most interesting ones:
-Nectar Farms’ new glasshouse will be powered by the Bulgana wind farm (190MW, with a 20MW/34MWh Tesla Powerpack battery)
-Sanjeev Gupta and GFG Alliance’s Whyalla steelworks will be powered by solar – utilising depleted mine pits to “unlock a legacy of past activity for the benefit of future generations”
-Vicinity Centres revealed that they will spend $75m to install solar at seventeen Vicinity-owned shopping centres.