The company hoping to build Australia’s largest solar farm says that the $2 billion facility, to be located 30km north west of Gympie, will grow to supply 15% of south-east Queensland’s energy needs.

Solar Q has lodged the development application for the solar and battery storage facility with Gympie Council. The first phase of the development, if approved, will see a 350MW facility built and running, but this will grow over four more years to provide 800MW (with 4,000mWh of battery storage), which is enough to supply 315,000 homes. Australia’s current largest solar farm produces 150MW, so the leap to 800MW takes the country onto the global stage.

Australia’s largest solar farm, for now

While the finished facility will be the nation’s largest, this title won’t belong to it forever, as it’s expected that even bigger solar farms will gain approval and be builtin the next few years.

If built, this solar farm will connect to the grid through an existing substation at Lower Wonga, which will then feed into Gympie, Kilkivan and Palmwoods.

Three million panels

The completed farm will have three million solar panels on its 17 square kilometre site to generate electricity during the day. At night, the battery will help the power stations to cope with peak demand times.

Council likely to give green light

The project – the largest ever planned for the region – will create 450 jobs during the construction phase and while it needs both council and state approval, officials are optimistic. There are various hoops and hurdles, but there’s also a lot of momentum and enthusiasm for the undertaking, which hopefully will start by the end of the year.

Solar farms and battery storage facilities produce very little noise, emit no pollution and don’t rely on diminishing resources to operate. There’s very little standing in the way of approval of this project, which will be funded by private investors.