In Aug 2018, we reported the installation of 3.6MW turbine in the Kennedy Energy park located in Flinders Shire. The installation of this Vestas V136 turbine pushed the project one step closer to becoming the world’s first grid connected wind-solar-battery park (hybrid renewable energy system). On Dec 13, WindLab confirmed the completion of this park’s construction that encompasses 55,000 solar panels and 12 wind turbines. After initial testing, the park will go online in early 2019. The capital investment was acquired from CEFC, ARENA and IPO of Windlab.
With a total planned generation capacity (second phase nicknamed “Big Kennedy”) of 1200 MW, the Kennedy project will be able to power over 800,000 homes in North Queensland. The first phase constitutes 20MW, 40MW and 2MW of solar, wind and battery storage respectively. The project employs Jinko and Tesla for solar arrays and batteries respectively. The further phases of this project depends on the capacity of the existing transmission lines. As reported by RenewEconomy, the state government has recently showed backing to a 500km transmission line that can enable numerous large-scale renewable energy projects in North QLD. The state’s favorability to solar power and renewable energy in general is non-debatable. The state still offers one of the highest solar feed-in tariffs in the country.
WindLab is an Australian company who has been a key player in the Wind Energy industry in the country. It was established for commercialization of the renewable energy technology developed by CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization, Australia). As of now, they have commissioned five wind farms in the country; largest being the 453 MW (123 turbines offsetting 1.18 million tonnes of annual CO2) Coopers Wind Farm located at North Cooranga costing over A$850 million. The construction of the Kennedy Energy Park began in late 2017, and the company holds majority ownership of the project.