Construction of US$2.6bn ‘largest’ windfarm in Southern Hemisphere underway

Final financing for stage two of the Golden Plains Wind Farm project in Victoria, Australia, closed in June, and construction on the AUS$4 billion (US$2.6 billion) ‘largest windfarm in the Southern Hemisphere’ is officially underway.

XCMG XCA4000 breaking a lifting record on a 200 MW Chinese wind farm construction project Construction of a 200 MW Chinese wind farm project. (Image: XCMG)

Australia-based TagEnergy secured financing from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac, Denmark’s Export & Investment Fund, Japan’s Mizuho Bank, France’s Natixis Bank, the Bank of China, and Germany’s Deutsche Bank.

CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth noted, “In a further demonstration of the success of our innovative ‘bridge to contract’ finance, CEFC capital will enable construction to begin before stage two secures power purchase agreements, ensuring faster deployment of clean, green power to Victorian consumers.

“This strategy helped fast track construction of stage, which has subsequently contracted 60% of its energy.”

Vestas, Danish wind-energy company and global wind turbine supplier, received the engineering, procurement, and construction contract. AusNet Services was announced as the grid connection provider, with WestWind Energy serving as asset manager.

The work consists of installing wind turbines that will generate 577 MW of electricity. Combined with the work from stage one (which TagEnergy said is nearing completion with 25% of turbines erected), the massive windfarm will produce 1,333 MW of power.

TagEnergy said the entire project should finish in 2027 and deliver 9% of Victoria’s electricity needs. Stage one should be operational in the first quarter of 2025, the company said.

Project moving like the wind

TagEnergy noted time savings so far on the multi-year scheme and credited the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) for the quick assessment and approval process for grid connection.

“The diligence and expertise of the grid connection teams at Vestas and AEMO Victoria who leveraged best practices developed during the adjacent 756 MW Golden Plains Wind Farm Stage 1 connection process reduced the assessment period from nine months to five months,” Riggs said.


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