NSW Minister for Planning and Housing, Anthony Roberts, last week announced approval of the 250-megawatt Limondale Solar Farm, which is located to the south of Balranald in the Riverina region and could provide power for approximately 94,000 homes.
"Our focus on developing clean energy sources is supporting state and national environmental targets and generating employment and benefits to families and businesses in our regional communities," Mr Roberts said.
"During peak construction Limondale will employ about 200 workers, the flow on effects to business in Balranald and surrounding communities will be significant.
"Limondale is NSW's sixth solar farm approval this year and will help us achieve the national renewable energy target of 23.5 per cent by 2020. This is a $150 million investment in NSW renewable energy development – we are truly leading the way in building clean energy solutions for our state," Mr Roberts said.
Minister for Energy and Utilities, Don Harwin, said the Limondale Solar Farm will be next to the recently-approved Sunraysia Solar Farm. "We are getting on with the job of providing the supply needed in the future to power NSW," Mr Harwin said.
"Together these two new solar farms in the State's south-west will have the capacity to supply 450 megawatts of energy to the grid, the potential to power 170,000 homes. These solar farms represent a $425 million investment in renewable energy in an area fast becoming one of the solar power generation hubs of Australia."
According to the Ministers, the Department of Planning and Environment has applied strict conditions to ensure economic, environmental and social impacts are carefully managed.
This includes a requirement for the proponent to work with Balranald Shire Council to maximise the employment of local workers and use of local accommodation, and to develop a strategy to manage the accommodation of the construction workforce.