A proposal for a large-scale solar farm in Muswellbrook within the Hunter Central Coast Renewable Energy Zone has drawn nearly 50 objections.
Plans for the development of the 135 MW solar and battery project lodged with the NSW Department of Planning and Environment show it would be located 2.5 kilometres east of the town and cover close to 500 hectares of land.
It would require the installation of solar PV panels and associated infrastructure including a 2.5km 132kV transmission line to connect into the grid.
Japanese energy giant Idemitsu’s Australian branch in partnership with ESCO Pacific is behind the project which would be situated on land primarily owned by Idemitsu, operator of the adjacent Muswellbrook Coal Mine.
The company estimates that once operational, the solar farm would supply renewable power to the national electricity market, generating power for approximately 79,000 Australian homes.
However, the project has encountered a snag. A total 61 submissions were made during the public exhibition period, the majority against it.
Residents along Woodland Ridge Road and surrounds are worried about the close proximity of the installation to their homes and are concerned the visual impact may devalue their properties.
A response will now be drafted before the project is assessed by the Planning Department.