The Construction Environmental Management Plans for AGL Energy Limited’s (AGL) Broken Hill Solar Plant have been approved by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment enabling the commencement of construction. 

AGL’s Project Manager for the Broken Hill Solar Plant, Adam Mackett, says obtaining the approval is an important milestone in progressing the construction of the 53 megawatt (MW) solar plant. 

“Prior to receiving the approval we were doing enabling works such as site establishment and access road works. Now we can move forward with the construction phase of the project. Construction of the solar plant is expected to be completed by the end of 2015. 

“We remain committed to continuing to hold regular community information sessions to help ensure the local community is kept informed about the project and also has the opportunity to meet the project team face-to-face to ask any questions they may have.”

AGL will be discussing the current status of the enabling works and the next stage of construction at the fourth Broken Hill Solar Plant community information session on Wednesday, 5 November. Open to the public, the event will be held at the Broken Hill Centre for Community, 200 Beryl Street, Broken Hill, from 6pm to 8pm.

Additionally, since the last Broken Hill Solar Plant community information session in September, AGL has established a community fund, which will be active during the project’s construction stage.

“Making a positive contribution in the local communities in which it operates is a priority for AGL. Community groups can apply for funds to support a range of local projects,” explained Mr Mackett.

AGL’s community funds have generally been provided to projects with demonstrable benefits in social welfare, safety, environment, education and youth, sport and recreation, arts and economic development.

The first round of the Broken Hill Solar Plant Construction Community Fund is planned to be advertised later this year and is worth $25,000. AGL is currently seeking interest from community members to join the assessment panel.

AGL will deliver the Broken Hill Solar Plant in partnership with the Federal Government’s Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), the NSW Government, the Broken Hill City Council, the local community and project partners First Solar.

The finished solar plant will consist of over 650,000 solar PV modules, covering an area of approximately 140 hectares.

About AGL

AGL is one of Australia's leading integrated energy companies and largest ASX listed owner, operator and developer of renewable energy generation in the country. Drawing on over 175 years of experience, AGL operates retail and merchant energy businesses, power generation assets and an upstream gas portfolio. AGL has one of Australia's largest retail energy and dual fuel customer bases. AGL has a diverse power generation portfolio including base, peaking and intermediate generation plants, spread across traditional thermal generation as well as renewable sources including hydro, wind, landfill gas and biomass. AGL is taking action toward creating a sustainable energy future for our investors, communities and customers.

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