June 1 (Renewables Now) - Construction is starting on the second stage of the Solar Energy Transformation Program (SETuP) project which aims to bring solar to remote off-grid communities in Australia's Northern Territory, it was announced on Thursday.
Thanks to Tranche Two of the project, another 17 communities will get 5.6 MW of photovoltaic (PV) capacity by November 2018. Under the project's first phase last year 3.325 MW of solar PV was integrated into diesel power systems in 10 remote indigenous communities.
Tranche Two will complete the roll out of the AUD-59-million (USD 44.6m/EUR 38.2m) project, which is supported by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) with AUD 31.5 million in funding. The project is jointly funded through the Northern Territory government and managed by Power and Water Corp.
"Each community will be operationally and technically ready to plug in more solar and storage as costs of renewable technologies fall," said ARENA chief executive Ivor Frischknecht.
(AUD 1 = USD 0.648/EUR 0.756)