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New windfarm feeding ACT comes online

The ACT has moved closer to reaching its renewable energy targets, with the opening of the new wind farm at Ararat in Victoria on Tuesday.

Acting Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability, Mick Gentleman, said the new wind farm moves the territory closer to reaching its 40 per cent renewable energy by 2017 target and its ultimate goal of 100 percent renewable energy by 2020.

"The completion of Ararat wind farm is another milestone in the ACT's ambitious renewable electricity target and further evidence of the success of our innovative reverse auctions," Acting Minister for Climate Change and Sustainability, Mick Gentleman said.

The project took two years to complete and will see the introduction of 75 new wind turbines, 27 of which are supported by an ACT large scale feed-in tariff. These new wind turbines will produce about 272,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity each year, enough to power around 37,000 Canberra homes.

"With a steady stream of wind and solar projects coming online over the next couple of years we are well on track to achieving our 100 per cent renewable electricity target by 2020, the ACT is already on track to reach 40 per cent renewable electricity supply for this calendar year," Minister Gentleman said.

The wind farm will create seven new jobs in Canberra with the local firm, Windlab, managing the operation of the Ararat wind farm.

Mr Gentleman said the wind farm would also create opportunities for local research and education with the development of a new Master's course in wind development at the Australian National University and a research partnership with Loughborough University in the UK for the "development of a new wind modelling tool," Minister Gentleman said.

The Ararat wind farm is in addition to the Sapphire wind farm, located in New South Wales. The Sapphire wind farm is set to generate enough electricity to power about 49,000 homes.

Source: The Canberra Times

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