Star of the South Shortlists Five Ports that Could Support Australia’s First Offshore Wind Farm
Star of the South, Australia’s most advanced offshore wind project, has identified five ports that have the potential and/or capabilities to support the proposed offshore wind farm. For two of the ports, Star of the South has confirmed that they will play important roles in the offshore wind farm’s construction and operation.
The developer says it will continue working with the five shortlisted ports as the project moves into the next phase of development.
Following a year-long analysis of port options, Star of the South pinpointed three deepwater ports that could accommodate large offshore wind installation vessels, with the proposed Victorian Renewable Energy Terminal at Port of Hastings being the frontrunner to support major construction needs and Geelong Port and the Port of Bell Bay also expected to play a role.
At the beginning of this year, the Energy and Resources Minister of the state of Victoria released the Victorian Offshore Wind Energy Implementation Statement 2 which set out how the state will leverage industry-led investment in offshore wind for the first tranche of projects and also confirmed the location of the Victorian Renewable Energy Terminal at the Port of Hastings.
“Right now, no ports are set up to handle offshore wind. Securing this new facility would ensure Victoria remains the leader of offshore wind in Australia. The Port of Hastings development will provide a fit-for-purpose facility that will meet the needs of this emerging industry”, Star of the South Chief Executive Officer, Charles Rattray, said.
Furthermore, Start of the South says Barry Beach Marine Terminal and Port Anthony are the options to host the project’s Gippsland Operations Base, which will be the base for the staff managing day-to-day wind farm construction and operations.
Around 200 long-term, skilled jobs are expected to be created and managed through the Gippsland Operations Base, according to the developer.
“We’re very focused on delivering benefits to Gippsland, and our Gippsland Operations Base will bring long-term, good quality jobs and an economic boost to local towns and the region“, Charles Rattray said.
South Gippsland Shire Council Mayor, Nathan Hersey, said: “The ports at Barry Beach are the only industrial ports within 10 hours sailing time from the Gippsland offshore renewable energy zone and are surrounded by viable industrial land. Their use has economic and environmental advantages and will help to minimise transport costs and maximise efficiencies”.
Star of the South, proposed to be located off the south coast of Gippsland in Victoria, is in the project development phase, seeking approvals with a plan to start construction around the middle of the decade and commissioning the offshore wind farm by 2028.
In December 2022, Australia’s federal government and the Victoria state government formally declared the Bass Strait off Gippsland as Australia’s first offshore wind zone and awarded Major Project Status to the Star of the South offshore wind farm.
If developed to its full potential, Star of the South would have up to 2.2 GW of installed capacity, powering around 1.2 million homes in Victoria.
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