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Development & Environmental Approvals for Merredin Solar Farm
Stellata Risen Energy
Merredin, Western Australia 6415
Type of work:
Land Insights was officially commissioned in late 2016 to prepare relevant documentation and obtain approvals for the development of a 100MW solar farm on behalf of Stellata Energy.
Our involvement included preliminary work to review the relevant State and local planning framework to determine how the solar farm would be classified and assessed. A detailed planning report was subsequently prepared to submit to the Shire of Merredin (and subsequently the Midwest Wheatbelt JDAP) for approval. The project comprises between 360,000 and 400,000 tracking solar panels and associated infrastructure, including:
- Photo Voltaic Modules
- Piles and Framework
- Inverters (and associated housings)
- Transformers (and associated housings)
- Substations (including circuit breakers and metering)
- Underground cabling
- Overhead wires
- Perimeter Fence
- CCTV (at entrance and adjacent to substations)
- Battery Storage
- Spares Storage building
- Maintenance compound.
An Environmental Management Plan, also prepared by Land Insights, was included in the submission. JDAP approval was secured in June 2017.
In progressing the application, Land Insights liaised heavily with the Shire of Merredin and their consultant planner, along with DWER and other relevant agencies. We provided comment to the JDAP and attended the JDAP meeting when the matter was considered and determined to ensure that appropriate conditions were applied to the approval.
Following approval by JDAP, Land Insights secured Clearing Permits and EPBC Clearances from relevant authorities. We then assisted with the clearance of conditions and final de-constraining of the site to allow for development to commence.
At this stage, the project ownership changed hands to Risen Energy. We subsequently worked with Risen to amend the approved plans through the JDAP process, and again assisted with clearance of conditions.
The site has now been constructed and is fully operational. It is (as far as we are aware) the largest solar farm in Western Australia.