WA's largest solar farm to slash mining emissions

In an Australian first, up to 100 per cent of daytime operations at two Pilbara iron ore mines will be powered entirely by renewable energy thanks to the commencement of the 60-megawatt Alinta Energy Chichester Hub Solar Farm. This will help reduce the use of diesel by around 100 million litres per year. 

The project received $24.2 million in funding from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), highlighting the Australian Government’s commitment to multi-year renewable projects which help lower emissions and costs. 

Assistant Minister to the Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Tim Wilson said the project will cut down emissions by integrating renewable energy into mining processes. 

“The Morrison Government will continue to support a low-carbon energy future and advance low emissions technologies for Australia’s mining industry,” Assistant Minister Wilson said. 

“Through ARENA, we support projects that demonstrate how renewables can reliably provide electricity to critical sectors while reducing costs and emissions.

“These renewable energy projects include Advanced Energy Resources’ Port Gregory wind farm that will power a garnet mine and the Agnew Renewable Energy Microgrid at Gold Fields’ Agnew gold mine.”

Over 500 workers contributed to the construction of the solar farm with around $4.7 million of the contract value awarded to Indigenous owned enterprises. 

The Alinta Energy Chichester Hub Solar Farm project will power Fortescue Metals Group’s Chichester mining hub and will see transmission lines connect the hub and Roy Hill to Alinta’s existing 145 MW gas-fired Newman power station and its 35 MW/11MWh battery storage system.

The Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility also supported the project with a loan of up to $90 million.

More information about the Alinta Fortescue Solar Project is available at arena.gov.au

Media contact:

Assistant Minister Wilson’s office 02 6277 2392