• Clean Energy Regulator of Australia accredited 514 MW of renewable energy projects in the month of July 2018
  • Of this, solar PV projects accounted for 395 MW or more than 76% of the total; project sizes were over 1 MW
  • July 2018 is now the month with the largest solar power capacity accredited in a single month since the start of the accreditation scheme
  • Large scale renewable energy capacity of the country that’s either operational or under construction at the end of July 2018 was 7,854 MW

Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator accredited 514 MW of large-scale renewable energy capacity in July 2018 in the form of 29 power stations. It includes five utility scale solar power plants of more than 1 MW capacity, with the largest solar project being the 138 MW Darling Downs Solar Farm in Queensland.

Solar power stations accounted for 395 MW or 76% of the total of 514 MW. Not only was solar the big winner among renewables in July 2018, it meant also record solar capacity accreditations a single month since the start of the scheme.

According to the agency’s statistics, three new solar projects reached financial close in July, representing a combined capacity of 207 MW, with the largest being the 105 MW Nevertire Solar Farm in New South Wales (NSW).

At the end of July 2018, Australia had a combined 7,854 MW of large scale renewable energy capacity either under construction or operating. Power purchase agreements (PPAs) were signed for another 781 MW of projects.

Between January 2016 and July 2018, Australia had 2,804 MW of accredited capacity, with another 5,050 MW of committed capacity. The Clean Energy Regulator considers 781 MW as ‘probable capacity.’

Accreditation of a renewable energy power plant in Australia means the project can start creating large-scale generation certificates (LGCs) for the power generated. These can be sold to liable entities under the country’s Renewable Energy Target (RET). This accreditation is available till 2030 and will end with the RET closure. Australia aims to achieve 33 GWh of additional renewable energy generation by 2020 under its RET.

In 2016 the Clean Energy Regulator estimated that for the 2020 target to be reached the total new capacity of renewable energy power projects required to be committed through to the end of 2018 was 6,000 MW. Due to a higher proportion of solar projects in the pipeline than expected the Clean Energy Regulator estimated that 6,400 MW would now be required to reach the target,” according to the website of the Clean Energy Regulator.

The Clean Energy Council of Australia recently published that the country is having a 5.48 GW large scale renewable energy projects portfolio as of May 11, 2018, with PV accounting for 2.69 GW of the total (see Australia 2018 RE Portfolio Over 5 GW).