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Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
8 October 2000
Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill today announced a $1 million grant for a state-of-the-art solar farm in Broken Hill, which will provide 80 new jobs.
"Australian Inland Energy and Solar Systems Pty Ltd will receive $1 million to install 42 high-tech solar dishes in Broken Hill," Senator Hill said.
"The site will be the largest solar farm in Australia, covering 20 hectares and producing one megawatt of power."
The solar technology is a world first and was designed and built in Australia by Solar Systems Pty Ltd.
The technology involves using a super solar dish, which tracks the sun as it moves through the sky. The dish will magnify the intensity of the sun by 500 times and focus the sun's rays on to very high efficiency solar cells.
"This new, clean energy will feed directly into the local electricity grid," Senator Hill said.
"Solar energy is a renewable resource which doesn't produce pollution, carbon dioxide or noise.
"Solar energy is also not susceptible to the same price fluctuations as other energy sources."
Senator Hill also announced a $1 million grant for the Pitjantjatjara Council and South Australian Division of State Aboriginal Affairs to install 10 solar dishes at the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands in the Far North West of South Australia.
This project will use similar technology to that being used in Broken Hill and help to reduce the reliance of remote communities on diesel generators.
The two projects are being funded under the fourth round of the Renewable Energy Commercialisation Program (RECP).
"Renewable energy is a key component of the Commonwealth's climate change policy," Senator Hill said.
The $55 million RECP grants program fosters the growth of Australia's renewable energy industry, reducing Australia's greenhouse gas levels.
So far 38 projects have been offered funding under the program.
The RECP grants are operated through the Australian Greenhouse Office, the Commonwealth's lead agency on greenhouse matters.
Sunday, 8 October 2000
Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill's Office) 0419 258 364
Carol Bartley (Australian Greenhouse Office) 0412 994 800