A NEW “community title” solar farm has been given the green light to be built on Gunnedah’s old abattoir site.
The Northern Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP), which provides independent, merit-based decision making on regionally significant developments, approved Ironbark Energy’s application yesterday.
Panel chairman, Garry West, said the 27-megawatt solar farm would be divided into 24 lots around the site’s perimeter and a further 272, 100-kilowatt sub-lots would be available for purchase.
“It will allow ordinary investors to commit to it,” Mr West said.
“There’s a potential for up to 272 investors.”
The panel deferred the solar farm proposal on December 9 while awaiting clarification on issues raised.
The final decision was made after hearing community and stakeholder submissions.
The company provided additional information, including details about the contamination and the proposed remediation of the site.
“Because it was an abattoir site, there were a lot of issues, like asbestos,” Mr West said. “We had to be satisfied these issues were properly addressed.”
The site is able to be used as a solar farm for 25 years.
The energy produced will go into the electricity grid to provide power for consumers within and around the area.
“The project will create power for the community using renewable, sustainable and clean energy,” Mr West said.
He added the solar farm has a capital investment of “over $20 but under $30 million”.
The JRPP has approved the application, subject to conditions. More information on the regional panels can be found at: jrpp.nsw.gov.au