June 19 (Renewables Now) - Power plants with a combined capacity of 285 MW have been accredited under Australia’s Renewable Energy Target (RET) in the month of May, shows an update from the Clean Energy Regulator (CER).
This brings total accreditations so far in 2019 to 1.5 GW. When a power producer gets RET accreditation, it starts receiving large-scale generation certificates (LGCs) for its electricity. "Liable entities" have to buy these certificates, bringing additional revenues for renewable power generators.
The new capacity in May comes from 25 installations, but two account for more than 95% of the total. These are the 144-MW Yendon Wind Farm and the 128-MW Numurkah Solar park.
Last month, 417 MW of utility-scale wind projects reached financial close, including the 227-MW Collector Wind Farm by Ratch-Australia Corporation Pty Ltd. That park is slated to begin commercial operations in the second half of 2020.
CER in 2016 estimated that reaching Australia’s 2020 RET of 33,000 GWh renewable power generation would require 6,000 MW of green power capacity. Due to a higher proportion of solar projects in the pipeline, the estimates were later updated to 6,400 MW. Power plants of 6,055 MW have been accredited between January 2016 and May 2019, so the country is very close to reaching the targeted capacity. CER’s update shows there are 6,484 MW of firmly announced projects.