Illawarra offshore wind farm: Massive 1022km2 project which would power 1.8m homes green lit

A 1,022-kilometre stretch of New South Wales coastline has been closed off for an offshore wind farm – the fourth largest in the country – that is expected to generate enough energy to power 1.8 million homes.

The federal government announced the final revised zoning details for the Illawarra offshore wind farm in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday after extensive discussions with local industry representatives, community groups and First Nations people.

Once completed, it is expected to cover an area of ​​1,022 km² – a third less than the original plans.

The project has the potential to generate 2.9 GW of electricity, enough to power 1.8 million homes across the state.

However, the development of these plans came after sustained protests from coastal residents, some of whom complain that the turbines would spoil the appearance of the coast.

Others claim it will harm the marine environment.

The Government’s new plans for the zone mean that significant environmental areas will be excluded, including the biologically important area for the little penguin, the important ecological element of the Shelf Rocky Reef and the migration and breeding area of ​​the southern right whale.

Wind turbines are now to be built 20 kilometres off the coast of Illawarra.

Deputy Treasurer and Whitlam MP Stephen Jones said the offshore project would play a key role in transforming Australia into a “global renewable energy superpower”.

The offshore wind farm is estimated to create 1,740 new jobs during the construction phase and 870 permanent jobs, including for engineers, technicians, operators, riggers, seafarers, dock workers, project managers and administrators.

“The designation of this offshore wind zone brings Illawarra one step closer to its goal of becoming a major supplier of the building blocks of the net zero transformation – green electricity, green hydrogen and green steel – and creating thousands of new jobs,” Energy and Climate Minister Chris Bowen said on Saturday.

The application period for feasibility licences for offshore wind projects in the Illawarra zone begins on Monday and closes on 13 August.

Construction cannot begin until the feasibility phase is completed and the developers have obtained the relevant environmental and management plan approvals.

They must also demonstrate how the projects will benefit Australian industry and jobs.

“Changing the zone to start 20 kilometres from the coast and exclude important environmental areas is a sensible compromise that reflects the views of the majority of the population while helping to achieve our shared goals of more renewable energy, more jobs and fewer emissions,” said Alison Byrnes, MP for Cunningham.

“My expectation is that all applicants not only ensure that their projects meet the highest environmental standards, but also include local content.

“(This includes) using locally produced steel and local labour and developing a comprehensive profit-sharing scheme so that if an offshore wind farm is built, our community will benefit.”

Leave a Comment

URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL URL