The winds of change blow through the Central Highlands
Could Tassie’s mountainous middle be the next big thing in renewable energy in Tasmania?
According to the Clean Energy Council of Australia (2019), wind power is currently thought to be the cheapest source of large-scale renewable energy , and these days the wind turbines are getting even larger and more efficient. In Tassie, the north end (both east and west) is the region best known for the massive, white, whirling wind farms that produce 140 megawatts of energy across two sites at Woolnorth, and 168 MW at Musselroe.
That energy is completely renewable, with the added benefit of being produced right here on the island – so it’s local, provides community benefits and makes our state a little more self-sufficient. Tasmanians have long been known for our commitment to renewable energy, and at Aurora we are equally passionate about the future of our state. The best way to meet growing demand is to become involved at the start of projects that will boost energy production in a renewable, supported way.
So, with that in mind, we’ve joined up with a project to build a $300 million, 150 MW wind farm at Lake Echo, just north-west of Bothwell. Construction is well underway, and the massive turbine blades have been seen by locals slowly making their way on trucks into their final positions. (This construction phase has the added benefit of creating around 150 jobs for locals.) Cattle Hill Wind Farm is expected to start generating electricity in mid to late 2019.
Once it’s up and running, it will employ to 10 permanent maintenance staff, which we know is always a benefit to a rural Tassie community. This long-term, large-scale production is an area we know will bring benefits to the community and the future of our state, and we are going to keep looking for opportunities to boost Tassie’s independence and strength.