More local projects, events or initiatives from across the Uralla region can now cash in on $50,000 in funding available from the second round of the New England Solar Farm’s Uralla Grants program.
Applications for funding are open until the end of the month, with a wide variety of projects being targeted to help share the benefits from the solar farm across the region.
Construction on the initial road upgrades for the New England Solar Farm are now underway, which will be followed by work on the solar farm site, later in the year.
The project is Australia’s largest hybrid solar and battery energy storage facility under construction and is tipped to help generate around 400 jobs during peak construction and up to a dozen ongoing jobs.
New England Solar Farm Project Director Tim Greenaway said it was exciting to see the number and variety of projects supported via the first round of funding under the program.
“The program was designed to share the benefits of the solar farm across the community,” Mr Greenaway said.
“The first round of the program helped schools, tree planting, bike repair workshops and community and sporting equipment, events and upgrades.
“We have been extremely happy with the range and number of community focused projects that received our help.
“But we know that there is more to do done and many more projects to support. We’re looking forward to seeing more applications roll in for the second round of funding.”
Individuals or organisations located in Uralla Shire and parts of Dangarsleigh and Kellys Plains are eligible to apply for funding until the end of the month.
The Uralla Grants program is being funded by the New England Solar Farm. It is part of the Community Benefit Sharing Initiative, which was set up during the planning process for the New England Solar Farm.
Members of a local Community Reference Group helped design the grants program and will oversee the final selection of successful applications.
Applicants can apply for grants of up to $5,000 for their community project or event.
For more information go to www.newenglandsolarfarm.com.au/urallagrants or visit the Uralla Grants Facebook Page
Applications close on Friday July 30, 2021.
Media contact: Anthony O’Brien 0407 264 727
About the New England Solar Farm
The New England Solar Farm is being built by experienced renewable energy developer UPC\AC Renewables Australia. It is a joint venture between the UPC Renewables Group and AC Energy (a subsidiary of the Ayala Corporation).
It will be built across two solar fields about six kilometers east of Uralla. Based on the target capacity of both stages of 720MW, the solar farm will produce around 1,800,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of clean electricity each year – enough to power about 250,000 NSW homes.
The project includes a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) capable of dispatching energy to the grid at times of high energy demand.
The solar farm and BESS will be constructed in stages, starting with a 400MW stage one solar farm and a 50MWh battery, which has received grant funding from the NSW Government’s Emerging Energy Program.
The solar and battery project will be Australia’s largest hybrid solar and battery energy storage facility. There is the potential to expand the Battery Project up to a maximum size of 400MWh.
The project received development consent from the NSW Independent Planning Commission in March 2020. The grid connection agreement with Transgrid and the New England Solar Farm was signed in June 2020.
Work is underway on access road upgrades, with the upgrades being needed prior to commencement of construction of the solar farm.