Indigenous Communities Back Clean Energy Project

Australia’s ‘Largest’ Solar Farm To Help Produce Green Hydrogen Moves Forward In Western Australia

Indigenous Communities Back Clean Energy Project

The solar farm under phase I of the East Kimberley Clean Energy Project (layout in the picture) is planned to have 900 MW capacity, making it the largest solar facility in Australia, said Pollination. (Photo Credit: Aboriginal Clean Energy)

  • Traditional owners of land MG Corporation and Balanggarra Aboriginal Corporation have become equal partners in a green hydrogen project in Western Australia
  • It comprises a 900 MW solar farm under phase I, with a 50,000 ton/annum green hydrogen plant
  • The plan also includes green ammonia production, to be supplied locally and exported to key trading partners in Asia and Europe

One of Australia’s largest clean energy projects with the ‘largest’ solar farm in the country having 900 MW planned capacity, to produce green hydrogen, has secured a green signal from the traditional owners of the land—MG Corporation and Balanggarra Aboriginal Corporation, said climate change investment and advisory firm Pollination.

The greenfield 900 MW solar farm is to be built under phase I of the East Kimberley Clean Energy Project in Kununurra, Western Australia, accompanied by a 50,000 ton/annum hydrogen production facility. Through electrolysis, the fresh water from Lake Argyle is to be turned into green hydrogen and transported via a new 120 km pipeline from the existing port of Wyndham.

The project partners explain that the Ord Hydro facility at the lake will supply baseload renewable energy to an ammonia production facility in Wyndham, producing close to 250,000 ton/annum green ammonia. It will be supplied to agricultural industry locally and exported to key trading partners in Asia and Europe.

It will then become the country’s 1st and only 100% renewable green hydrogen and ammonia project, they claim.

Pollination Head of Projects Rob Grant said, “The main requirements for green hydrogen production are clean water, sunlight and renewable energy sources and all are abundantly available in this project.”

MG Corporation is providing its freehold land near Kunurra in Western Australia for the project. Development work is likely to continue over the next 12 months, with plans to start construction on site by late-2025. Initial production is aimed for 2028-end.

The project is being managed by the Aboriginal Clean Energy (ACE) Partnership with equal stake of MG Corporation, Kimberley Land Council, Balanggarra Ventures and Pollination.

The aboriginal population getting actively involved in the project is significant since it helps them move away from the “historic passive engagement model of receiving royalties for agreeing to give up control of our land,” according to MG Corporation Executive Chair Lawford Benning. “This project gives us a chance to be active shareholders, understanding the risks and rewards, and making informed decisions about long-term strategic projects on our country. Anything we do must be sustainable, intergenerational and connect culture and heritage.”

Recently, Philippines’ ACEN joined hands with Yindjibarndi Aboriginal Corporation (YAC) in Western Australia to develop 3 GW renewable energy capacity calling it one of the largest indigenous led renewable energy initiatives in Australia (see 3 GW Solar & Wind Projects On Aboriginal Land In Pilbara).

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

SENIOR NEWS EDITOR Anu is our solar news whirlwind. At TaiyangNews, she covers everything that is of importance in the world of solar power. In the past 9 years that she has been associated with TaiyangNews, she has covered over thousands of stories, and analysis pieces on markets, technology, financials, and more on a daily basis. She also hosts TaiyangNews Conferences and Webinars. Prior to joining TaiyangNews, Anu reported on sustainability, management, and education for leading print dailies in India. [email protected]

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