Victorian Government commits $10 million to large scale solar project near Mildura

THE Victorian Government last week said it is continuing to deliver on its commitment to renewable energy with the announcement of $10 million in funding for the next stage of the Solar Systems project.

The funding will allow for a new 1.5 megawatt solar pilot plant built near Mildura, consisting of 40 concentrating photovoltaic dishes.

The government has committed a total of $50 million to the project, including $5 million for the already completed first stage.

Energy and Resources Minister Michael O'Brien said the funding follows the successful completion and assessment of the first phase of the project, which included a 600 kilowatt pilot installed at Bridgewater.

The project includes further testing of Solar Systems' technologies developed as part of stage one of the project at the company's Abbotsford manufacturing and testing facility.

"The Coalition Government is supporting a range of investments in energy technology to create improved ways of providing energy to Victorian families and businesses with low or no greenhouse gas emissions," Mr O'Brien said.

"This funding takes Solar Systems one step closer to its planned development of a large scale solar power plant in Mildura that could provide enough electricity to power more than 35,000 households and create high skill local jobs."

Solar Systems has developed solar technology that uses mirrors in a dish to track the sun as it moves across the sky, concentrating light on a super-efficient solar receiver.

This project is co-funded by parent company Silex Systems Ltd and the Commonwealth Government.

Subject to the successful completion of milestones, a third stage of the program will see the Victorian Government providing up to $35 million for the development of a large scale solar plant with capacity of around 100 megawatts in Mildura.

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