The City of Fremantle has revealed it is proceding with plans to to build a solar farm of around 2MW in size on the former South Fremantle landfill site (pictured below), as it works to fulfill its commitment to meet 100 per cent of council energy needs with renewable energy by 2025.
As part of its One Planet Fremantle program – which also commits the council to zero corporate emissions by 2020 via a mix of green power purchase options, renewable energy, and energy efficiency measures – the City has in place a dedicated program of renewable and energy efficiency projects.
The program includes the installation of solar on its Town Hall and Civic Centre, the installation of LED lighting in parks and public places, and the upgrade of the Fremantle Leisure Centre to use geothermal and other renewable energy sources.
“Our aim is for the new administration building at Kings Square to be the first zero carbon building of this scale in Australia, meaning it will produce as much energy as it uses throughout the year,” Mayor Brad Pettitt told the Fremantle Gazette last week.
In June, Council started negotiations on the South Fremantle solar farm with Australian renewables outfit, Epuron, giving it until August 2017 to undertake due diligence, resolve environmental and other regulatory approval matters and seek customers for a power purchase agreement, potentially including the City of Fremantle.
Last week, Dr Pettitt said Epuron – which last year completed a 1.8MW solar installation at the Ayers Rock Resort near Uluru in Central Australia – now had until August 2019 to secure environmental and regulatory approvals, seek a customer for a power purchase agreement and to complete construction of the project.
The re-purposing of council-owned land, such as former landfill sites, as renewable energy generation assets is becoming increasingly common, with the NSW coal city of Newcastle set to tender for the job to design, build and operate a 5MW solar farm at the Summerhill waste management centre.
In Queensland, the Sunshine Coast Council is building a 15MW solar farm that will generate enough electricity to cover local government’s entire consumption.