New wind farm to go ahead in VIC

The return of certainty following debate over a revised Renewable Energy Target has been cited by investors in a $450 million wind farm.

The Australian Financial Review reports that the consortium includes GE Australia, Downer, Partners Group, Renewable Energy Systems, and OPTrust (one of the biggest Canadian pension funds).

"This is a great story of how policy certainty can unlock investment,” Geoff Culbert, chief executive of GE Australia, told the AFR.

"This decision has immediately unlocked half a billion dollars of foreign investment into Australia."

There will be an estimated 165 employed in the construction phase of the project, with 13 full-time workers eventually employed. It will be Australia's third-largest wind farm.

The 75-turbine site near Ararat, Victoria, will sell 40 per cent of its power to the ACT.

"The ACT feed-in tariff has underpinned the development of Ararat and has allowed the first large-scale wind farm in Australia to achieve financial close since the uncertainty surrounding the renewable energy target started," the territory’s environment minister, Simon Corbell, told the ABC.

RET legislation passed parliament this week, revising the target from 41,000 gigawatt hours to 33,000 gigawatt hours by 2020.