The proposed Daroobalgie Solar Farm in New South Wales will be located on 300ha of land ~10km from Forbes, and will generate enough energy to power approximately 34,000 homes each year. A transmission line and switching station will need to be built to connect the solar farm to the grid. Pacific Hydro is working closely with local landowners to determine the final location for this infrastructure. An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIS) is now underway, and members of the community will be invited to participate in this process in early 2021.
Daroobalgie Solar Farm is expected to have a generating capacity of approximately 100 Megawatts, enough to power roughly 34,000 homes every year. Some of the key characteristics of the Daroobalgie site that make it suitable for a solar farm include:
- strong location for efficient capture of energy from the sun, with initial modelling showing an average of 1,848 kilowatt-hours of sunlight per square metre each year
- high potential for connection to nearby substations and transmission lines, making it possible to export electricity generated to Australia’s National Electricity Market (NEM)
- flat terrain with minimal trees and vegetation. The property is currently used for livestock grazing and cropping
- excellent transport links, with options for both road and rail haulage.
Pacific Hydro has a strong track record of delivering lasting social, environmental, and economic benefits to the local communities in which our projects are located. These include:
- a significant number of direct jobs during construction
- generating local economic activity during construction and operations
- opportunities for local businesses and suppliers
- support for community-led projects and initiatives
- up to 6 permanent jobs will be required to ensure the effective operation of the solar farm, with further contractor opportunities also anticipated.
Local suppliers and contractors may also be engaged for the construction and delivery of the project wherever possible, and are encouraged to register their interest and capabilities with us here.
These jobs will help diversify local skills and economic output for the region, complementing the agricultural industry and contributing to the prosperity of the local economy.
A key part of Pacific Hydro’s successful delivery of projects is the way we engage and involve our neighbours, communities, and stakeholders throughout all stages.
Throughout 2021 we will be conducting public information sessions, meeting with business and local interest groups, and working with Forbes Shire Council to ensure that local knowledge and perspectives are understood and considered during all stages of planning.
Neighbours, stakeholders and members of the community will be provided with opportunities to participate in the EIS process, with initial meetings having taken place in early 2020. This involvement ensures that valuable local knowledge and perspectives are understood and considered by the project team and the business.
Pacific Hydro is proud to support communities that host our clean energy projects through our industry-leading Community Investment Program, which delivers a portion of revenue back into our local communities each year.
The program aims to empower local communities to identify the projects and initiatives that we should support. A range of methods are used to achieve this aim (such as community funds and sponsorships), tailored to the specific needs of each area.
Since its launch, the program has delivered over $4.2 million to over 875 community-led projects across regional Australia.