Total Eren launches construction of it's first solar PV plant in Australia

Paris/Melbourne, 17 October 2018 – Total Eren, a leading renewable energy Independent Power Producer (“IPP”) headquartered in Paris, is pleased to announce the start of construction of the Kiamal Solar Farm located in the state of Victoria, Australia. The 256.5 MWp solar power plant has already signed three Power Purchase Agreements (“PPAs”) with Mars Australia and the two Victorian-based energy retailers: Flow Power and Alinta Energy.

Kiamal Solar Farm is located 3 km North of Ouyen township in North-West Victoria and is approximately 100 km South of Mildura. Total Eren obtained Planning Consent for Kiamal Solar Farm from the Mildura Rural City Council in September 2017. With three PPAs secured and onsite works commencing shortly, Total Eren is pleased to announce that its first solar photovoltaic (PV) project in Australia has entered into its construction phase.

The 256.5 MWp Stage 1 of Kiamal solar PV power plant will be made up of over 720,000 PV panels with single-axis trackers covering over 500 hectares. The commencement of construction ceremony was celebrated on Wednesday 17th October 2018 in Melbourne with the presence of the Hon Lily D’Ambrosio MP, Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change.

The Project is expected to reach commercial operations in mid-2019 and when completed, the Kiamal Solar Farm will be Victoria’s largest solar power plant; producing enough electricity to meet the needs of more than 133,500 Victorian homes and displacing more than 610,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions annually.

The construction will be led by a turnkey Consortium jointly led by Biosar Australia (“Biosar”), part of the Greek infrastructure group Aktor S.A., and Canadian Solar, one of the world’s leading solar PV technology suppliers. The project is expected to contribute to the local economy during the construction and operational phases through local investment in jobs (with an average of 200 workers on site during construction, 7 for the operational phase), accommodation and ongoing services.

Total Eren is working with TransGrid to deliver a new 220 kV Kiamal Terminal Station and Collector Substation, with transformers designed and manufactured locally by Wilsons Transformers in Victoria. The Kiamal Solar Farm is unique in that it has committed to install a more than 100MVAr synchronous condenser as part of the generating system in order to facilitate a timely connection to the Victorian Transmission System, in turn substantially strengthening the grid in the region and making it possible to connect even more renewables in NW Victoria.

Total Eren is also seeking to expand Kiamal Solar Farm with a second stage of up to 194 MWp, as well as exploring commercial options for the approved 380 MWh of energy storage.

The project has secured three Power Purchase Agreements (“PPAs”) with one corporate and two energy retailers for the supply of electricity and green certificates:

Mars Australia (“Mars”) has signed a PPA with Kiamal Solar Farm as part of their plan to generate the equivalent of 100% of Mars’ electricity consumption from renewable energy by 2020. Mars has contracted energy to cover the equivalent of the electricity requirements of its six Australian factories in Victoria and New South Wales: Asquith, Ballarat, Bathurst, Wacol, Wodonga & Wyong, and two sales offices (Melbourne & Sydney).

Flow Power, one of Australia’s fastest growing energy business retailers and Alinta Energy, a leading Australian energy generator and retailer will procure electricity and green certificates from Kiamal Solar Farm.

Total Eren alongside Biosar, Canadian Solar, Mars, Flow Power, and Alinta Energy, recognise the need to take an active role in reducing Australian’s reliance on fossil fuels with Kiamal Solar Farm contributing to increasing Australia’s renewable energy penetration and reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

Fabienne Demol, Executive Vice-President – Global Head of Business Development of Total Eren stated: “The successful start of construction of Kiamal Solar Farm is an important milestone for us as this is not only our first project in Australia but also our largest solar project worldwide. I want to thank our best-in-class partners and excellent teams who made this project possible. Total Eren has an ambitious vision for the development of renewable energy in Australia, and partnering with major industry players ranging from manufacturing, utility and retail is an important lever in our strategy to becoming a significant player in the national renewable energy market. It also sends a strong message to the rest of the market that now is the time to capitalise on the opportunities offered by renewables and to drive positive change in the environment.”

Michael Vawser, Asia Pacific Regional Director of Total Eren, added: “Having the weight of Total Eren behind the team here in Australia has meant that we have been able to develop this site from scratch starting only in December 2016. The momentum behind this project grows every day and I will be genuinely delighted to watch the first solar panels go in just a few weeks.”

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