Local firms to vie for work on $850 million wind farm

INFORMATION sessions on how local contractors can secure work on Australia's largest wind farm project will be held in coming months.

The $850 million Coopers Gap project, which will create 200 jobs across two regional council areas during construction, achieved financial close yesterday.

The project, which has a footprint across the Western Downs and South Burnett regional council areas, will generate 20 jobs once operational in 2019.

The project will be built near Cooranga North near Bell which sits between Kingaroy and Dalby.

Industry body Toowoomba and Surat Basin Enterprise, which worked with AGL Energy for more than 12 months, will coordinate contractor sessions to ensure the region's operators understand the project, its requirements and the opportunities it presented.

TSBE general manager supply chain Reagan Parle said a number of regional firms had the credentials to compete for work in the lead-up to construction starting on the project.

"We anticipate that our membership and wider network can meet some aspects of the project and look forward to working towards interest around roads, trenching, fencing, earthworks, trades, transport and other operational requirements," Mr Parle said.

"There are significant opportunities ahead for contractors in our region and we look forward to continuing to work with AGL on the Coopers Gap wind farm.

"This project will be a visible example of the renewables sector, clean-energy sector investment in the region."

Local content from suppliers has been a key focus for TSBE which worked with AGL Energy behind the scenes for the past 14 months before the financial close announcement.

The group will continue to work with contractors.

TSBE executive chairman Shane Charles said the project was a great example of investment in new and alternate energy sectors in Queensland.

It is the first project in Queensland to be developed under the Powering Australian Renewables Fund, which was formed by AGL, QIC and Future Fund.

From its 123 towers, the Coopers Gap wind farm will produce about 1,510,000 MWh of renewable energy annually, which can power more than 260,000 Australian homes.

The wind farm is expected to be fully operational by mid-2019.

TSBE will release details of the engagement sessions in the coming months.