Landholders have been given a new tool to help them cash in on Australia’s clean energy transition.
The online tool developed by the Australian National University maps the best locations for wind and solar farms nationwide.
Locations are rated on key factors including proximity to existing transmission lines, and the quality of their wind and solar resources.
Researchers say it will help landholders understand the value of their properties as host sites for solar and wind farms, and empower them to approach developers directly.
They noted the area between Goulburn and Lithgow in NSW is extremely suited to new clean energy projects, and that Tasmania’s north coast and King and Flinders islands are ripe for development.
“In Victoria, the Yallourn district is attractive because of good wind potential and strong existing transmission into Melbourne, plus there’s a need to replace local coal industry jobs. There’s also extensive wind potential west of Melbourne,” Professor Andrew Blakers said.
“South Australia has excellent wind and solar potential to the east of the St Vincent and Spencer gulfs, while Queensland’s best wind and solar sites follow the coastal transmission lines north from Brisbane in areas such as Rockhampton and Mackay.”
PhD researcher Cheng Cheng, who also worked on the project, said the tool could reduce the time it takes to get new projects off the ground.
“If landowners or local councils are able to access this sort of information and collectively approach developers themselves, it could speed up the development process,” he says.
The tool can be found at: https://re100.eng.anu.edu.au/heatmaps/#map-links
(Australian Associated Press)