Sunshine Coast Council launches solar plant to offset all power use


The Sunshine Coast Council will soon become the first local government in Australia to offset 100 per cent of its electricity across all of its facilities and operations with the official commissioning of the Sunshine Coast Solar Farm.

The $50.4 million 15MW solar farm, constructed at Vadora west of Coolum over the past 12 months with 57,960 panels, will feed into the Energex network and is estimated to save $22 million over 30 years after all costs are paid.

Launching the facility, Mayor Mark Jamieson said the solar farm, the second largest solar farm built in Queensland behind Barcaldine Solar farm (20MW) which is not council-owned, would offset energy used at all the council's facilities, including administration buildings, aquatic centres, community and performance venues, as well as holiday parks, libraries, art galleries and sporting facilities .

“Our solar farm is the first, and will be the largest, to connect to the electricity grid in southeast Queensland. It is also the first in Australia to operate at 1500 volts DC which enables it to operate more efficiently,’’ he said.

Cr Jamieson said the project had been developed and delivered solely by council, without any assistance from the Federal or State governments.