Spanish utility Union Fenosa proceeds with 850 MW in Australia

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Spanish utility Union Fenosa is proceeding with a A$1.9 billion ($1.2 billion) investment plan to develop seven wind farms with a combined capacity of 850 MW in Australia. Union Fenosa took control of the projects from TME Australia, a subsidiary of Spanish firm Tecnología y Mercado Exterior (TME) last July (Windpower Monthly, August 2008). TME retains a small share in the projects, five of which are in Victoria and two in New South Wales (NSW). Union Fenosa's Hermenegildo Franco says the federal government's target for 20% of electricity to come from renewable energy by 2020 and its planned emissions trading system provide the right conditions for the investment. Three of the projects have planning permission and are due to be completed in 2010: a 130 MW, 68-turbine project in Moyne Shire and a 60 MW, 31-turbine project in Hawkesdale, both in Victoria, and a 92 MW, 46-turbine wind farm in Crookwell in NSW. Union Fenosa hopes to finish the remaining four projects in its portfolio by the end of 2013. In western Victoria, it has earmarked sites in Tarrone, Berrybank and Darlington for development, while in NSW it hopes to build at Paling Yards. On completion, the seven wind farms will double Australia's installed wind capacity, currently at 824 MW.

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