From the NSW Minister for Energy, Don Harwin
THE year 2018 has been a landmark year for solar energy.
The New South Wales Minister for Energy, Don Harwin, revealed that in the past six months, the number of operating large-scale solar projects in NSW had more than doubled.
Injecting roughly 350MW capacity of clean energy directly into the grid, the number of projects has jumped from three to seven, generating roughly enough energy to power 130,000 households.
"The last 10 years has seen exceptional momentum within the renewable energy space, with a bustling portfolio of new and developing clean energy projects," MrHarwin said.
To date, a total of 47 large-scale solar energy projects in NSW have generated a total capacity of more than 3000MW, providing reliable power to more than one million homes statewide.
Mr Harwin also said the NSW Government continued to work closely with local communities and independent regional planning panels to ensure everyone had a say and a role in the state's transition towards a cleaner energy future.
"NSW is a great place to invest," he said. "The cost of solar technology is falling, making it one of the cheapest forms of new-build generation alongside wind.
"Large-scale solar operators know NSW is rich with sunshine in many parts of the state.
"The NSW Government is tapping into this naturally abundant resource to ensure the smooth transition towards a more secure, affordable and modern energy future for NSW.
"Our government relies on strong partnerships with the private sector to generate the innovative solutions that will bring this vision to life."
The renewable energy sector's future is looking to be a bright one, driving about $20billion in investment and supporting an estimated 12,000 jobs statewide.
"To ensure the state has sufficient and affordable energy generation, the NSW Government is upgrading energy transmission infrastructure throughout the state, unlocking further investment opportunities and laying the secure and strong foundation for new clean energy projects into the future," Mr Harwin said.
The community is encouraged to have their say on the issue, with all large-scale solar proposals to be subject to a rigorous NSW Government planning assessment, including public exhibitions.