Victoria’s largest solar farm operational

Victoria’s largest solar farm is now fully operational and powering Melbourne’s tram network.

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio today official opened Neoen’s 128 megawatt (MW) Numurkah Solar Farm, which received funding under the Labor Government’s Solar Trams Initiative.

The Numurkah Solar Farm is one of two solar farms supplying 100 per cent renewable energy to offset Melbourne’s entire tram network.

The facility will generate approximately 255,000 megawatt hours of clean, renewable electricity into the national power grid each year.

“This is Victoria’s largest solar farm – we’re proud to have supported a project that has delivered hundreds of jobs in regional Victoria,” said state Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio.

“The Numurkah Solar Farm will play an important role in supporting the transformation of our energy system towards clean, renewable energy and reaching our renewable energy target of 50 per cent by 2030.”

The Renewable Certificate Purchasing Initiative and Solar Trams Initiative have brought forward construction of around 350 MW of new solar and wind capacity – leveraging around $720 million in capital expenditure and creating 755 construction jobs and 33 ongoing jobs, all in regional Victoria.

With the initial support secured from the Government, Neoen has secured a 15-year deal with SIMEC ZEN to help power the Laverton Steelworks, taking the initial project size from 34 MW to 128 MW DC/100 MW AC.

The emissions reduction delivered by this solar farm will be the equivalent of taking 75,000 cars off the road or planting 390,000 trees.

The Labor Government is increasing Victoria’s Renewable Energy Target to 50 per cent by 2030 – putting more clean energy into the grid, increasing investment and driving down energy prices.

It is expected that achieving the VRET 2025 target of 40 per cent alone will drive around $7.2 billion of investment and create more than 10,000 jobs, as we boost the amount of energy generated by renewable sources.