Star of the South partners with universities for site investigations

In: Windfarms
07/05/2020

Star of the South
offshore wind farm has partnered with Curtin University and Deakin University to assist with offshore site investigations. Both universities are working with RPS Australia Asia Pacific to collect important data to inform the projects environmental assessments and the project’s design. Curtin University’s Centre for Marine Science and Technology is helping the company to understand marine mammals in the project area. Deakin University is supporting its seabird and seabed biodiversity and fish surveys. The survey will involve experts in a wide range of species such as blue whale, fur seals, leatherback turtles, great white shark, and short tailed shearwaters.

Star of the South
is expected to have the potential to generate up to 20 per cent of Victoria’s electricity needs and would feed power into the national grid via an underground cable to the Latrobe Valley. If the project is found to be feasible, and subject to government approval, construction could commence in 2022, with power generation in 2024. It represents a potential AU$8bn (€5bn) investment. Approval for an exploration licence was granted in March 2019.

The Star of the South project will go through environmental assessment and approvals processes, required by Commonwealth and State governments. There are no existing offshore wind projects in Australia. The developers are working with government on how best to investigate and develop the project.

It is expected that the project will need a number of approvals from various government bodies. These include approval under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act), Planning approval under the Victorian Planning and Environment Act 1987, a marine and coastal consent under the Victorian Marine and Coastal Act 2019 as well as a cultural heritage management plan under the Victorian Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006. The developers will also need a commercial licence to construct and operate the project.

The Commonwealth Government is currently working on a new regulatory framework to enable offshore clean energy projects. Other approvals and consents may also be needed. These will be identified through the assessment process and in consultation with regulatory agencies

For more information on offshore wind farm developments worldwide,
click here. Alternatively you can view projects worldwide on 4C Offshore's interactive map.

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