The Queensland government has announced that construction works are set to begin this month on the 162MW Columboola Solar Farm.

Queensland Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said that the project will be built by Hana Financial Investment between Chinchilla and Miles.

Dr Lynham said: “Queensland has an economic plan for post-Covid recovery and affordable, reliable energy supply underpins that plan.

“That plan includes investing in traditional infrastructure and supporting the renewables industry because that supports jobs. With the government’s new renewable energy zone initiative for South-West Queensland, Columboola is set to be followed by ongoing new renewable energy projects and jobs.”

“Queensland is forecast to reach 20% renewable generation this year and projects like this continue to drive us to our target of 50% by 2030.”

Additionally, UK-based project developer Luminous Energy has announced the financial close for the project and its concurrent sale to Hana.

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The project will be built by Stirling and Wilson and is expected to come online y the end of next year.

During the construction phase, it is expected to create 400 employment opportunities in the region.

Once completed, the energy generated by the solar facility will be purchased by CS Energy under a power purchase agreement (PPA) which will on-sell it to its large commercial and industrial retail customers.

CS Energy CEO Andrew Bills said: “Through this PPA CS Energy continues to diversify our portfolio and offer our retail customers renewable generation as part of their energy supply.

“We’re excited to facilitate further renewable energy development in Queensland and help move the state closer to achieving its goal of 50% renewables by 2030.”