Largest wind farm in Southern Hemisphere opens

15 April 2013

MELBOURNE: A new wind farm was opened in the state of Victoria, Australia on Friday, now the largest wind farm in the Southern Hemisphere.

The Macarthur Wind Farm, located 260 kilometers west of Melbourne, Victoria, has been fully commissioned, adding 420 megawatts of clean generating capacity to the Australian National Electricity Market.

The joint venture between AGL and Meridian Energy will almost double the amount of wind energy produced in Victoria, which continues to have the most emissions intensive electricity sector in the country, due to a dependence on brown coal.

The AUD$1 billion project is the largest wind farm in the Southern Hemisphere, and is expected to prevent the release of 1.7 million tons of carbon dioxide each year.

David Perry, Research and Program Manager, The Climate Group commented: “Wind has contributed to reduced coal use in South Australia, but so far there has been little change in Victoria. It will be fascinating to observe how this added wind capacity will shift the generation mix over the coming months.”

Over half the wind turbine towers were manufactured in the nearby town of Portland by Keppel Prince Engineering, with the remainder manufactured in South Australia. The project created 644 direct jobs during construction.

South Australia continues to have the highest installed wind capacity of any state, despite having a population less than a third the size of Victoria.

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