By HARRY CLARKE
THE rapid progress of the 42-turbine Wambo Wind Farm’s first stage means construction could start as early as the second quarter of 2022, the company behind the renewable energy project has revealed.
The wind farm being built near Jandowae will create up to 200 jobs during the construction phase and up to 20 staff will be required once it’s operational.
Cubico Sustainable Investments boss David Smith said the company would be focussing on employing the region’s locals.
“Cubico is committed to maximising the opportunities for people and companies in the local area to supply goods and services to, and direct employment with, the wind farm during construction and operations,” Mr Smith said.
“We are very excited to be working with Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise (TSBE) to understand how best to make this happen”.
Stage 1 of the major project will deliver around 250MW of renewable wind energy from 42 turbines into the national grid and contribute to the Queensland Government’s target of 50% renewable generation by 2030.
Wambo Wind Farm is expected to begin operating and producing clean power in late 2023.
Once complete, it will produce enough energy to power approximately 170,500 houses per year and prevent emissions of more than 1.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere annually.
TSBE’s General Manager of Energy and Infrastructure Lance MacManus congratulated Cubico on the huge milestone.
“Wambo Wind Farm is an extraordinary project for our region, not only contributing to renewable energy targets but also creating great supply chain opportunities.”
“We’re excited to be partnering with Cubico to carry out a supply chain mapping exercise to boost opportunities for businesses in the region,” Mr MacManus said.
TSBE’s online Supplier Portal will provide a better understanding of local capability through a new questionnaire which has stemmed from research into windfarm projects.
This information will help Cubico identify businesses who are ready to work on the development from concept to design, construction, operations and maintenance and will also identify upskilling opportunities for the supply chain.
Queensland businesses interested in wind farm development are being encouraged to register their capability on TSBE’s Supplier Portal at Linking Businesses to Opportunities – Windfarm Capability Mapping | TSBE Suppliers Portal.
With interest in Wambo Wind Farm now expected to ramp up following the funding announcement, Cubico and TSBE are organizing an online information session will be held on Wednesday, 10 November.
The principal contractors and maintenance providers will explain their procurement processes and requirements.
The webinar will help regional supply chain businesses understand how they can be involved in the project and what opportunities are available once the next phase of the project begins.