Image Resources has announced that Sunrise Energy Group will build, own and operate a 3-4MW single axis tracking solar farm located next to Image Resources high-grade, zircon-rich Boonanarring mineral sands project located 80km north of Perth, which is currently under construction and scheduled to be commissioned in the 4th Quarter 2018.
The solar farm will be located approximately 20km north of Gingin, adjacent to the Boonanarring mine and processing facility and connected directly to Image’s embedded electrical supply network in a “behind the meter” configuration and is expected to provide approximately 25 per cent of the required electricity for the mine on an annual basis.
“We are pleased to be one of the pioneering WA mining companies adopting distributed renewable electricity generation” said Patrick Mutz, Managing Director of Image Resources. “Not only will the solar farm supply power in an environmentally sustainable manner, its construction will result in a further AU$6-$7m of capital investment by Sunrise Energy Group into a long-life asset located in the shire of Gingin, creating both construction and operational employment. It could also provide a small savings in annual electricity costs to the Company.”
Sunrise Energy Group will now work, at its cost, to complete all of the remaining development activities, including securing all required approvals, over the next 6-8 months, with construction anticipated to commence in early 2019.
The binding provisions of the HOA are customary for an agreement of this nature and include exclusivity, confidentiality and the reimbursement of certain costs incurred by Sunrise Energy Group in the event Image decides not to proceed with the project during the project approvals phase.
“We are excited to be working with Image Resources on this solar farm project” said Neil Can-by, Executive Director, Sunrise Energy Group. “The adoption of large-scale distributed generation by the commercial and industrial sector in WA has been very limited to date. The WA market is a very different market to the National Electricity Market applicable to the Eastern States, having unique challenges and opportunities. Image Resources has taken the time to work through our commercial model and evaluate the opportunity as a potential large load industrial customer, including the social, environmental and economic benefits of having distributed renewable energy generation for their mining project.”
Mr Canby goes on to say, “This proposition is not unique to Image Resources. This is a model that can be used for many large rural loads across WA that are connected to the grid. We look forward to making this project a huge success for Image Resources. Sunrise Energy Group is proud and committed to be leading the charge in this exciting new energy supply segment.”