The Queensland Government has granted planning consent for the $750 million Boulder Creek Wind Farm in Central Queensland.
Australian renewable developer Epuron, lodged it's development application and Environmental Impact Statement for the project in July this year.
The consent is for installation of up to 60 wind turbines and associated infrastructure on a site approximately 5 kilometres west of Mount Morgan and 40 km south-west of Rockhampton.
Epuron said the location was chosen because there is a strong wind resource, high voltage transmission lines and good road access with few neighbouring properties.
Wind measurements show a strong night-time profile, which complements the day-time power output of existing solar farms.
The first large scale wind farm development in the Rockhampton region is expected to under go a 18-24 month construction period and is estimated to commence towards the end of 2022 and create up to 350 jobs.
Once operational, the Boulder Creek Wind Farm is expected to generate up to 372 megawatts of clean electricity, enough to power about 215,000 homes.
Epuron's Development Director Paul Stangroom, said the project will be a significant project for the region.
"It is an exciting step that the Boulder Creek Wind Farm has been granted approval by the Queensland Government," Mr Stangroom said.
"This project will be a great opportunity for the Rockhampton region to benefit from Australia's clean energy transition.
"The Boulder Creek Wind Farm site is ideal for wind energy generation. It has an excellent wind resource and is close to the existing transmission network."
The application is yet to be approved under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and once that has been achieved the project will start preparing for construction.
Construction is expected to begin towards the end of 2022 and take 18-24 months, with the wind farm to be fully operational by 2025.
Epuron is also finalising documentation for the proposal's assessment and approval under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
Once this has been accepted by the Australian Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment it will be placed on public exhibition.
Rockhampton Region Mayor Tony Williams said the building of such facilities will give the Rockhampton region the opportunity to play an important role in the generation of renewable energy.
"Almost 3 per cent of our workforce is currently involved in the delivery of electricity, gas, water, and waste services compared to 1.1 per cent for Regional Queensland as a whole," Mayor Williams said.
"Electricity generation has been one of the strengths in our region and will continue to do so as we transition from a fossil energy economy to a low carbon energy economy.
"The transition will deliver many benefits for the local economy and will open up new opportunities for local businesses looking to diversify and for new businesses looking to relocate to regions with renewable energy option".
Advance Rockhampton Executive Manager Greg Bowden said it's great to see Rockhampton on the map as a region invested in providing alternative energy options.
"Along with our focus on traditional energy sources we are also excited that the Rockhampton region can play a key role in providing renewable energy options," Mr Bowden said.
"The development of renewable energy assets highlights the region's crucial role in modernising Australia's economy and putting Rocky on the radar as an attractive region to invest in".
Epuron will be hosting community information sessions for residents interested in learning more about the project, and these sessions will be held at Westwood and Mount Morgan in December.
Time: 4:00pm -6:00pm
Date: Wednesday, December 8, 2021
Location: Westwood Hall
4544 Capricorn Highway, Westwood
Time: 4.00pm - 6.00pm
Date: Thursday December 9, 2021
Location: Mount Morgan Soldiers Room
18 Morgan Street, Mount Morgan
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