HUNDREDS of jobs will be created in the coming year following the Emerald Solar Park's immediate construction start, according to RES Australia.
RES Australia Project Development Manager Rebecca Meek said this week - as the project reached financial close for both equity and debt - that the Solar Park would create 150-200 direct jobs and 320 indirect positions in the Central Highlands.
It is projected to make a significant contribution to the Queensland Government's target of 50% renewable energy by 2030.
Ms Meek said Lighthouse Infrastructure had acquired 100% of the Solar Park project through its Lighthouse Solar Fund.
The park, to be built on the west side of Emerald, will be set on 160 hectares and will be one of the largest renewable energy sources in northern Australia with the installation of up to 275,000 solar panels.
Ms Meek said RES Australia would undertake both Construction Management and Asset Management services on behalf of Lighthouse, which had appointed RCR O'Donnell Griffin to construct the project.
She said it was expected the Solar Park would take less than 12 months to complete and when finished, would provide up to 68 MWac of generation capacity into the Queensland grid, producing enough electricity to power the equivalent of up to 35,000 households.
Ms Meek said the project was supported by a long-term power purchase agreement (PPA) signed with Telstra.
"RES has been able to apply its global market leadership in the corporate PPA sector to tailor this deal around Telstra's strategic requirements,” she said.