Your questions answered

A Community Reference Group (CRG) acts as a key conduit for community involvement during a project's development and operation. Members act as a two-way link between the project team and community members, representing local residents, businesses, and interest and industry groups. Read more about the Glenrowan Solar Farm CRG here.

We established a CRG for 2023 and the Chair will conclude the current CRG's membership before the next round of funding in 2024 as part of our Benefit Sharing Program. This will allow for 'reference group refreshment' and ensure membership is revitalised and opportunities are given to others in the community to nominate. To register your interest in joining the CRG in the future, please email contactus@glenrowansolarfarm.com.au

Community benefit sharing is about creating a positive legacy in the local community. Benefit sharing also needs to be tailored to local circumstance, culture and need. Read more about the Glenrowan Solar Farm Benefit Sharing Program here. 

The first round of benefit sharing took place in 2023 and involved these activities:

May 2023: First CRG meeting

June 2023: Benefit sharing community survey launched with community newsletter

July 2023: Second CRG meeting. Benefit Sharing Program announced, applications open and outreach events start

December 2023: Third CRG meeting. Benefit sharing application assessment. Applicants are notified of outcomes

March 2024: Fourth CRG meeting to prepare for round two in 2024.

Solar energy is one of the most well-known renewable energies, with high uptake for both residential users as well as large scale developments. According to Australian Government records, approximately 30% of homes have rooftop solar systems. The benefits of solar are multifaceted; their use results in less harmful pollution entering the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels, reducing our reliance on a finite resource, and helping fight climate change.

The Glenrowan Solar Farm uses photovoltaic (PV) technology. These are panels of PV cells that convert sunlight directly into electricity, the same technology used in residential rooftop systems. The panels are set in formation or arrays and attached to fixed-tilt mounts so they can follow the sun’s movement. The arrays are connected to one or more power inverters which modify the direct current (DC) electricity generated by the panels into alternating current (AC) used in the electricity grid. Power generated at the site will be connected to the nearby Glenrowan Terminal Substation, and from there to the broader grid, via a series of underground cables to be installed during construction.

Glenrowan Solar Farm is located within one of the legislated Victorian Renewable Energy Zones (specifically Victoria’s Central North REZ). There are six REZs throughout Victoria, identified as key areas to target investment in infrastructure and renewable projects to better diversify and strengthen the Victorian transmission network. Renewable projects within these zones benefit from government investment in supporting infrastructure.

The REZ program is a key part of the Victorian Government’s net zero target, and Glenrowan Solar Farm will contribute to achieving this target and supporting the transition to a carbon neutral future.

Glenrowan Solar Farm’s Community Benefit Sharing Program has been developed with community input to best reflect the unique needs of the Glenrowan and surrounding community. Pacific Partnerships Energy is here for the long haul, and these benefits will align with the Community Engagement and Benefits Sharing in Renewable Energy Development in Victoria - a guide for renewable energy developers. This guide highlights the importance of giving something back to the communities in which renewable energy projects operate and acts as a basis for any Community Engagement and Benefits Sharing activity conducted in the future.

The Clean Energy Council is a peak advocacy body for the clean energy industry in Australia. This non-profit organisation works with businesses and companies within the renewable energy industry. For more information about how the Clean Energy Council benefits the renewable energy industry, and customers and communities surrounding it, head to https://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/

Unlike wind farms, solar farms do not generate noise and are silent in operation.

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) sets out the maximum recommended noise levels for commerce, industry and trade premises in regional Victoria. We will comply with the applicable criteria and keep the community informed of our works and any changes.

There will be minimal lighting on the solar farm at night, and as such, minimal impact on the surrounding landscape. Site lighting will be fitted with suitable shields so direct light is emitted only within the site boundaries. Final lighting plans will be prepared as part of the detailed design process.

Solar panels use low reflectivity glass and are designed to absorb as much light as possible to maximise their energy generation. When the light hits the panel at a low angle, it can reflect some light; however, the average reflection of a solar panel is less than a car windscreen.

We are committed to developing opportunities to share benefits with the local and regional community through local and social procurement, employment and training opportunities that can deliver positive social and local economic outcomes for the region.

The project has employed 72 direct full-time equivalent jobs and this number will increase to approximately 125 during construction. We anticipate there will be four ongoing full-time equivalent jobs once the solar farm is operational, including three locally-based electricians. 

The construction and operation of the solar farm has been appointed to UGL, a member of the CIMIC Group. Construction began in late 2022 and is expected to be completed by April / May 2024, when operations and maintenance will start.

We will do everything we can to minimise disruption and use a range of mitigation measures to keep impacts to a minimum. Construction activities are being undertaken in line with EPA guidelines. We will keep the community informed of our work plans.

The health and safety of our workers as well as our community is our priority. We consider safety to be a core principle of our work.

If you have any questions or feedback to share regarding the Glenrowan Solar Farm project, please contact us via email at contactus@glenrowansolarfarm.com.au, by phone on 03 6289 8919 or submit written feedback using the webform on the Contact Us page.

If you would like to register your interest to receive project updates and news, please use the webform on our Contact Us page.