Brumby sees the light after solar power tour

The future looks bright for Victoria's solar industry after Premier John Brumby indicated that four solar power plants capable of powering 200,000 homes could be built in the state over the next ten years.

The future looks bright for Victoria's solar industry after Premier John Brumby indicated that four solar power plants capable of powering 200,000 homes could be built in the state over the next ten years.


He also flagged an increase of solar energy share in Victoria's mandatory renewable energy target, possibly 2.5 percent of the total 10 percent by 2016.

"If we set the 2.5% target, that will lead to a very high degree of interest (from companies) … you'll see a rush of activity," he said.

Premier Brumby made the comments in the US during a visit to the Ausra Incorporated solar thermal plant, located in the Nevada desert, which was founded by former Sydney University solar energy researcher, Dr David Mills.


Development of a $420 million 154-megawatt solar power station in the Victoria's north-west is already under way and Mr Brumby said he could "foresee another three or four plants of that potential size and scale over the next decade".


The solar plant, near Mildura, is being built by TRUenergy and Melbourne company Solar Systems. With a completion date of 2013, the plant is expected to provide enough green power for 45,000 homes.

Mr Brumby said Victoria had excellent prospects for solar power, particularly in the north and north-west, and large industrial users in the western suburbs could benefit from the technology.

"I really want to push this through, and we're seeing just great opportunities," he said, adding that he would like work to begin on another solar plant in Victoria within two years.

Mr Brumby, along with Queensland premier Anna Bligh visited solar manufacturing plants and attended a conference on alternative energy in the US last week. They have also announced a joint grant of $680,000 for the development of a "solar map" of Victoria and Queensland, which would identify optimum locations for solar energy plants in the future.

Please visit www.energymatters.com.au for more information, or call +61 3 9697 1900

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