Sunshine Coast solar farm "fantastic initiative"

18th Jul 2013

A solar farm slated for Queensland's south-east will help to generate more than half of the local authority's electricity needs once complete.

And the development has been lauded by the Australian Solar Council, which welcomed the Sunshine Coast Council's decision to shift towards renewable solutions.

Due to be built at Valdora, near Coolum, the farm was described by Australian Solar Council chief executive John Grimes as a "fantastic initiative".

Grimes' comments come soon after his organisation bemoaned the possibility that solar schemes across the country could face rough times ahead as rumours spread that government funding may be in jeopardy.

"The Sunshine Coast Council is really showing leadership by looking to replace more than 50 per cent of their electricity needs coming in the olden days from the grid and now in the future to come from a solar farm built on the Sunshine Coast," he explained.

And the plaudits didn't stop there. Grimes said south-east Queensland has some of the best solar resources across the globe and it is good the region has recognised this fact.

The Sunshine Coast Council can reduce pollution, cut power bills and boost employment opportunities in the green industry, he added.

The solar farm is expected to have long-term advantages, producing at least half of the council's electricity requirements for 30 years or more.

Narelle McCarthy, Sunshine Coast Environment Council spokesperson, said her organisation was looking forward to developing the project, calling it a "game-changer".

Not only will this boost the region's sustainability, she commented, but it will also create a number of local economic opportunities.

"A project such as this really demonstrates bringing emissions down and transitioning from a fossil fuel dependency to solar technology, which is going to deliver economic benefits as well as environmental benefits [that] are real and it's very feasible," she said.

Posted by Mike Peacock

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