April 19 (Renewables Now) - The University of Queensland (UQ) said on Thursday that construction has been launched on a 64-MW solar park that will help it offset its entire annual power demand.
The so-called UQ Warwick photovoltaic (PV) farm is being constructed near Warwick, on Queensland's Southern Downs region, and is expected to be brought online late in 2019 or by early 2020, generating 160,000 MWh of electricity each year.
The AUD 125-million (USD 89.4m/EUR 79.5m) project will make UQ the first major university in the world to offset 100% of its electricity consumption through its own renewable energy asset, according to the announcement. More than 160 people are expected to be employed during the peak construction stage. Installation of the PV panels is planned to begin around the middle of this year.
The project was developed by renewables firm Terrain Solar. The university purchased it last November after the scheme was cleared by the Southern Downs Regional Council and the connection agreement with Ergon Energy was finalised.
(AUD 1.0 = USD 0.715/EUR 0.636)