If you thought our nation’s capital was best known for its dodgy laws, war memorials and pollies’ hot air, you’ll need to think again. This last week has seen the ACT Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, position the ACT as the country’s solar power capital.
How so? Did Mr Corbell move Canberra a little closer to the sun, Icarus-style? Well sort of, with the announcement this week that Spanish renewables firm Fotowatio Renewable Ventures (FRV) is to build a 20MW solar power facility, to be named Royalla, in the District of Tuggeranong.
The ACT Government’s 5th Sept press release confirmed that the new power station will be the largest solar power facility built in Australia to date.
Fairly impressive don’t you think folks? Mr Corbell agrees and holds nothing back in his announcement of the agreement with Fotowatio.
“This is an important day for Canberra, and I am proud that the ACT Labor Government is delivering on its promise to make Canberra, Australia’s solar capital,” Mr Corbell said.
“This reverse auction process has delivered a solar facility that will produce enough renewable electricity to power approximately 4,400 Canberra homes at a cost of 25c per week per household or $13 per year,” he added.
However in what may be the clincher for ACT households, Mr Corbell went on to say that the cheap renewable electricity made available by the solar power facility is expected to (…drum roll) get even cheaper.
“Importantly, we expect this already low cost to reduce further as the wholesale price of electricity rises, and for the cost per household to reduce to approximately $9.50 per year by 2020,” he said.
Word is the facility will help in the ACT government’s aim to make Canberra a completely sustainable city. Obviously if this could be linked to a method to harness the excess hot air in Canberra during Parliamentary sitting days, Canberra could well become the Australian energy powerhouse!