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Wind in the Bush: The most informative, comprehensive, and up-to-date pages on Australian wind power and wind farms.
These pages are independent of any company, lobby group, or government.


Created 2008/03/03, modified 2009/09/06
Information about wind farms that I have missed, additional interesting information,
or corrections for anything that I have got wrong, would be greatly appreciated.
About these pages
Contact: email daveclarkecb@yahoo.com

Contents of this page...

Wind farms by region | Operational wind farms

Major wind farms...
Grasmere | Albany | Walkaway | Alinta | Badgingarra | Bremer Bay | Merredin | Collgar | Coral Bay | Denham | Denmark | Emu Downs | Esperance | Salmon Beach | Nine Mile Beach | Ten Mile Lagoon | Hopetoun | Kalbarri | Nilgen | Rottnest Island


Minor wind farms
Other proposed wind farms
Index

Introduction

 
Colour coding
for wind farms below
Proposed
Approved
Under construction
Operating
This page is one of a group intended to provide unbiased and acurate information on wind farms to anyone who may be interested. It mainly concentrates on large, utility scale wind turbines and farms (1MW or greater), but some smaller installations are included.

Climate change is the greatest threat facing the world today; wind generated electricity is one of a number of ways that we can reduce our reliance on fossil fuel-generated electricity and therefore reduce our greenhouse gas production and limit climate change.

The WA Premier's climate change action plan of 2007 called for renewable energy generation in the South West Interconnected System to be at least 6% by 2010, 15% by 2020 and 20% by 2025.





Wind farms by region

This table includes all the large operating wind farms (>1MW),
but does not attempt to include all small farms or all proposed farms

RegionWind farmStatus
Far north
coast
Coral Bay Operating
Denham, Shark Bay Operating
North coast Alinta, GeraldtonOperating
Emu Downs, CervantesOperating
Kalbarri Operating
Inland Collgar, Merredin Approved
Islands Rottnest Operating
South Coast AlbanyOperating
Bremer Bay Operating
Denmark Proposed
Hopetoun Operating
Esperance Ten Mile Lagoon Operating
Nine Mile Beach Operating



 
Updated 2009/07/03


Operational Western Australian wind farms

Operational Western Australian wind farms, MegaWatts
Wind Power in WA
Farms less than 1MW excluded
Installed wind power in WA - by wind farm
Wind farmMW
Albany21.6
Alinta (Walkaway)90.2
Bremer Bay0.6
Cocos (Keeling) Island 0.8
Coral Bay0.8
Denham0.7
Emu Downs79.2
Esperance: Nine Mile Beach 3.6
Esperance: Ten Mile Lagoon 2.0
Hopetoun0.6
Kalbarri1.7
Rottnest0.6
Total202
Farms less than 0.5MW excluded





Albany wind farm

Sometimes known as Grasmere wind farm

Albany turbine
One of the Albany turbines at sunset

Verve Energy's Grasmere wind farm is twelve kilometres west of Albany and 400km SSE of Perth. An interactive map showing its location and giving directions on how to get there is available on ExplorOz.

It is on a very scenic section of the south coast of Western Australia. There is a parking area, several viewing areas, and a few kilometres of pleasant walking trails at the base of several of the turbines. There is a trail connecting to the Bibbulmum track.

Good views can be seen of places as far away as the Porongorup and Stirling ranges from one of the hill lookouts.

The Albany wind farm is owned by Verve Energy, from whom came much of the data for this section.

On 18th February 2008 the ABC reported that Verve Energy plans to increase the output by adding another six turbines. Milton Evans, Mayor of Albany, has said that the existing wind farm generates about 50% of Albany's electricity. (He also said that there was the possibility of wave power development.) With the new turbines wind could supply up to 90% of Albany's power needs.

SalientEnergy.com reported that "local officials last week approved" the increase in the size of the wind farm (2008/10/29). Also it seems the six new turbines are to be of 2.3 MW each. SalientEnergy also reported that "Verve will make the final decision on the $40 millon expansion by early next year".

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Albany wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Annual productionCommissionedLat.Long.
Operating121.821.6 Average 77GWhOctober 2001S 35.06°E 117.786°


Proposed expansion to Albany wind farm - summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Construction date
Proposed61.8?10.8?Undecided

I have emailed Verve (11th April 2008, inquiries@verveenergy.com.au) asking for more information on the proposed expansion, but had not received a reply by June.

On 2008/09/12 Albany Mayor Milton Evans reported that Verve have confirmed that they are going ahead with the project in April 2009.

Albany turbines
Before sunrise, Albany wind farm


Further data on Albany wind farm (stage 1)...
Project cost$45 million
Turbines
Rotation rate10 to 22 revolutions per minute
Productive wind speedsFrom 2 to 14m/sec (36 to 130km/hr)
Wind speed at which
maximum output reached
14m/sec (50km/hr)
Survival wind speedGreater than 60m/sec (220km/hr)
Wind generatorsEnercon E66
Turbine typeThree bladed, upwind, horizontal axis,
variable speed inverter coupled
MechanicalNo gearbox
ManufacturedGermany
Tower height65m
Tower materialSteel
Rotor diameter70m
Blade length35m
BladesGlass fibre reinforced epoxy


Productivity
Greenhouse gas savingEstimated at 77 000 tonnes CO2 p.a.
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Alinta wind farm

Sometimes called Walkaway wind farm

This wind farm is 30km SE of Geraldton, about 12km from the coast, and 370km north of Perth.

This farm was owned by Alinta, now Babcock and Brown. Alinta has an Internet page on the farm, and Babcock and Brown's can be found via B&B Wind Partners, (go to "assets" and then "Australia").

This wind farm has the, so far as I know, otherwise unheard of capacity factor of 47%. This means that the amount of electricity generated is 47% of the rated capacity of the wind farm. A more typical c.f. is 30%, although I believe 35% is not unusual in Australia. Miles George of Babcock and Brown Wind Partners also informed me that this c.f. is the best for all of B&B's 79 wind farms.



Alinta wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW CommissionedLat.Long.
Operating541.6589.1 April 2006S 28.90°E 114.89°


Further data...
Wind resource
Average wind speeds5.5-7m/sec in the cooler months, 7-10m/sec Oct. to March
(20-25 km/hr in the cooler months, 25-35km/h Oct. to March)


Turbines
TypeNEG Micon NM82 - 1.65MW
Expected life25 years
Rotation rate14.4 revolutions per minute
Productive wind speedsFrom 3.9 to 18 m/sec (14 to 65km/hr)
Wind speed at which maximum output reached6m/sec (36km/hr)
Tower height78m
Tower weight130 tonnes
Tower materialSteel
Rotor diameter82m
Blade lengthApprox. 40m
Blade materialFibreglass
Blade weight7.5 tonnes


Project
Project costAus$210 million


Productivity
Annual generation367GWh
Greenhouse gas savingEstimated at 400 000 tonnes CO2 p.a.
Capacity factor47% net
Power exportVia existing 132kV transmission line
Some of the data in this table came from the Alinta Net site mentioned above, and some from Miles George of B&B Wind Partners.
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Badgingarra wind farm

Proposed by Griffin Windfarm 2 Pty Ltd (Griffin Energy is involved in coal-fired power stations in WA) and Wind Portfolio Pty Ltd, this farm, if built, will be immediately to the north of the existing Emu Downs wind farm, 16km west of the town of Badgingarra and about 185km north of Perth. The Development Application also states that it will be close to the coast and between the coastal towns of Cervantes and Julien Bay (this seems inconsistent because Badgingarra is about 50km from the coast).

The Development Application was filed in June 2008. The proponents say that "The turbines will be situated on previously cleared farm land and have minimal environmental impact during and after the construction phase. Some turbine sites may require minor vegetation clearing however this will be avoided wherever possible." The Development Application also state that the project is strongly supported by the relevant landowners.

Griffin has a Net page on the wind farm.

Badgingarra wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Completion dueLat.Long.
Proposed43 to 652 to 3Up to 130 2011?S 30.39°E 115.36°

The Development Application states that most of the winds are from the south and south-east, with less, but signifacant winds, from the east and north-east.

Further data on Badgingarra wind farm
Project
Greenhouse gas abatementEstimated at 455 thousand tonnes per annum





Bremer Bay wind farm

This wind farm, consisting of a single turbine and belonging to Western Power Corporation, is situated a Bremer Bay 500km SE of Perth between Albany and Esperance.


Bremer Bay wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Completion dateLat.Long.
Operating10.60.6 June 2005Approx. S 34.39°E 119.38°


Powercorp were the principal contractor for this project. The project value was Aus$3 million.





 
Location
Wind farm location
Acknowledgement: http://www.collgarwindfarm.com.au/
 
Updated 2009/06/10

Collgar wind farm

Also called Merredin wind farm

A joint venture between Investec Bank (Aust.) Ltd. and Windlab Systems P.L. There is a not very informative page on the Net. It is proposed that the wind farm will be built about 25km SE of Merredin, south of Burracoppin, and about 250km ENE of Perth.

The Merredin Mercury carried a more informative article on 2008/08/28.

The project was approved by the Shire of Merridin in late September 2008. ABC on-line news reported on 2008/10/02 that the Project Manager Mark Headland said that the plant should be online by 2010.

It has been estimated that 'up to 200 people' will be employed during construction and between 5 and 15 will be employed perminantly for maintenance of the farm.

Collgar wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Construction dateLat.Long.
Approvedup to 1272.1?Up to 267 late 2009?Approx.S 31.56°E 118.55°

Collgar wind farm - additional information
Project valueAus$600 million
Tower height80m
Blade length50m
Total height (tower and blades)130m





Coral Bay wind farm

Owned by PowerCorp, this wind farm is about 1130km north of Perth.

Coral Bay turbines
Coral Bay turbines; showing how they can be raised and lowered
Photo credit: Brendan Ryan


Coral Bay wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW CommissionedLat.Long.
Operating30.2750.825 October 2006Approx.S 23.15°E 113.77°


Coral bay wind farm - additional information
Project valueAus$4 million
Turbine typeVergnet 275kW, lay-down model
Annual generationAround 1980 MWh

The area is subject to tropical cyclones with consequent occasional huricane force winds. The turbines can be brought down to avoid the strongest winds.
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Denham wind farm

Denham is an isolated town on the west coast of Western Australia, about 900km north of Perth. The Denham wind farm is operated by Horizon Power, from whom came much if the information in this section.

A single 230kW Enercon wind turbine was first installed in 1998. Two more were added later.

Horizon Power state that "the annual average wind energy penetration in Denham will exceed 44%".


Denham wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW CommissionedLat.Long.
Operating30.230.69 First turbine 1998Approx. S 25.92°E 113.55°


The Sustainable Energy Branch of Horizon Power is considering adding a 300kW turbine to the Denham system.
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Denmark wind farm

"Denmark Community Windfarm originated as a local response to the global challenge of climate change. Since the first community workshops in 2003 the vision has been for Denmark to own and operate its own windfarm."

The newsletter of December 2008 included the following:

"For decades Denmark has been supplied with electricity via the State electricity grid, generated by coal and gas-fired power stations more than 400km away. Being near the end of such a long transmission line, Denmark continues to experience power quality and reliability issues, including occasional extended blackouts in some areas. Population growth and more appliances being connected means that the need for a more reliable and robust supply has reached a critical level. The proposed windfarm will feed into the grid, helping to improve its quality and reliability, reducing Denmark's 'carbon footprint', and delivering social and environmental benefits. Western Power, which is responsible for maintaining energy infrastructure, sees the windfarm as the centrepiece of its multi-million dollar program to upgrade the local power network over the next few years."
It is expected that the wind farm will generate about 55% of the 8GWh of electricity consumed by homes and businesses in Denmark and bring about the saving of more than 5700 tonnes of atmospheric CO2 annually.

Federal Environment Minister, Peter Garrett, announced on 2008/10/16 funding of $1.4 million dollars for this project.

Denmark wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Construction dateLat.Long.
Proposed20.81.6 Possibly late 2009Approx. S 35.03°E 117.33°

Considering the $1.4 million government grant it seems likely that the Denmark project will be the first Community wind farm in Australia. They are much more common in some European countries, including (ironically) Denmark.

News
2009/03/26 - ABC On-line News

Denmark Shire Council opposes the wind farm on the preferred site, on the grounds that it "would be an eyesore".

The Denmark Community Wind Farm Group insists that the project will not go ahead anywhere else.






Emu Downs wind farm

Emu downs turbine
Emu Downs wind farm
Photo credit: Sarah Rose, W.A.
Construction of this wind farm near Cervantes 200km north of Perth started in November 2005. It is in the Shire of Dandaragan.

Electricity from this wind farm is used, among other things, to power a desalination plant at Kwinana, south of Perth.

Some of the information below was extracted from Wikipedia. Stanwell Corporation (Qld.) used to own this wind farm, but sold it to Transfield Services Infrastructure Ltd. on 5th Dec. 2007. I wrote to Transfield seeking more information, specifically the annual production and capacity factor of this wind farm, on 13th April 2008, but had received no reply by 2008/06/12.

Emu Downs summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Annual productionCommissionedLat.Long.
Operating481.6579.2 ?October 2006Approx. S 30.50°E 115.33°

Emu downs turbines
Emu Downs wind farm
Photo credit: Brendan Ryan


Further data on Emu Downs wind farm...
Project
Project costAus$180 million
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Esperance wind farms

The Esperance wind farms are run by Horizon Power.

Esperance - 600km ESE of Perth - has been the pioneering town in the Australian wind energy experience. It started with the Salmon Beach wind farm: six 60kW turbines commissioned in March 1987. Later (1993) came the nine 225kW Ten Mile Lagoon turbines, and later again (2003) came the six 600kW Nine Mile Beach turbines.

The current power system comprises these two wind farms plus a 30MW gas-fired power station. According to Horizon Power the wind farm generates about 22% of Esperance's electricity with a maximum instantaneous penetration of just over 65%.

An interactive map showing the location and giving directions on how to get there is available on ExplorOz.



Salmon Beach wind farm

Salmon Beach turbine
The last remaining Salmon Beach turbine in the foreground, Nine Mile Beach turbines visible in the background. The Salmon Beach turbine no longer operates, it has been left for historical interest. Photo taken from a lookout at the south of Esperance.
The Salmon beach wind farm operated from 1987 for nearly 15 years. It was decommissioned in 2002 due to urban encroachment and the age of the turbines.

The wind farm consisted of six turbines each of 60kW capacity.

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Nine Mile Beach wind farm


Nine Mile Beach 
turbines
Nine Mile Beach turbines

Nine Mile Beach wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Annual productionCommissionedLat.Long.
Operating66003.6 ?2003S 33.88°E 121.79°


Further data on Nine Mile Beach wind farm...
Construction
Principal contractor Power Corp
Turbines
Rotation rate18 to 34 revolutions per minute
Productive wind speedsFrom 2.5 to 35 m/sec (9 to 126km/hr)
Survival wind speed60m/sec (216km/hr)
Wind generatorsEnercon E40
Turbine typeVariable speed, inverter connected
MechanicalNo gearbox
ManufacturedGermany/Australia
Tower height46m
Blade length22m




Ten Mile Lagoon wind farm


Ten Mile Lagoon
Ten Mile Lagoon turbines on left.
Some of the Nine Mile Beach turbines are barely visible in the distance on the right.


There is a scenic road around Ten Mile Lagoon and Nine Mile Beach wind farms; worth taking for the coastal scenery let alone the turbines. A side road leads to an information shelter and a viewing area on top of the ridge among the Ten Mile Lagoon turbines.

There seems to be no public access to the vicinity of the Nine Mile Beach turbines.


Ten Mile Lagoon wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Annual productionCommissionedLat.Long.
Operating92252.025 ?1993S 33.82°E 121.79°


Further data on Ten Mile Lagoon wind farm...
Turbines
Rotation rate33 and 43 revolutions per minute
Productive wind speedsFrom 3.5 to 25 m/sec (12.6 to 90km/hr)
Survival wind speed56m/sec (202km/hr)
Wind generatorsVestas V27
Turbine typeTwo speed, induction type
MechanicalGearbox (1:23.4)
ManufacturedDenmark/Australia
Tower height31.5m
Blade length13.5m
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Hopetoun wind farm

 
Updated 2009/08/18
The Hopetoun wind farm is situated near the town of the same name on the south coast between Albany and Esperance, and is operated by Horizon Power, from whom came much if the information in this section. (Verve Energy are also involved, they have a net page on the farm at "http://www.vervenergy.com.au/mainContent/sustainableEnergy/OurPortfolio/ Hopetoun_Wind_Turbine.html".)

This wind farm consists of two 600kW Enercon E-40 wind turbines.



Hopetoun wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW CommissionedLat.Long.
Operating20.61.2 ?Approx. S 33.95°E 120.12°


The two turbines were erected several years apart, the second one, I believe, around 2008 to mid 2009.
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Kalbarri wind farm

This wind farm was built by Verve Energy. Verve Energy call this a mini-wind farm; it consists of two 850kW Enercon E48 turbines. Verve state that they expect the turbines to improve the quality of the local electricity supply and to increase its capacity by about 15%.


Kalbarri wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Completion dateLat.Long.
Operating20.851.7 28 July 2008Approx. S 22.71°E 114.16°


The ABC reported on July 3rd 2007 that the two wind turbine sites were moved to cleared land (a distance of 150m) because of a rare species of orchid.

The ABC again reported on the wind farm on 28th July 2008 saying that it had been opened, its total cost was Au$5m ($2m of which came from the Commonwealth Government), and that it was expected to "meet a third of Kalbarri's power needs and offset about 5 000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions a year."

Powercorp were also involved in the development of this project, apparently supplying voltage control equipment.

I emailed Verve Energy seeking more information on this wind farm; didn't receive a reply.

Kalbarri also has a 20kW photovoltaic system, consisting of 256 panels. The angle of the panels is automatically adjusted six time a day to follow the sun as it crosses the sky.

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Nilgen wind farm

This wind farm is proposed by Pacific Hydro who have submitted a Planning Application to the Shire of Gingin Council. The proposed location is on a ridgeline approximately 9km east of Lancelin and 100km NNW of Perth. More precisely Pacific Hydro's Planning Application states that "the site runs approximately 10km from Dingo Road in the north to just north of Sappers Road in the south".

Pacific Hydro's page on this wind farm can be accessed via their home page.

It is expected that the project will have an operational life of 30 years.

Nilgen wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Construction dueLat.Long.
ProposedUp to 53Up to 2.5Up to 132.5 UndecidedApprox. S 31.02°E 115.42°

Further data on Nilgen wind farm
Project
Greenhouse gas abatementEstimated 500 000 tonnes per annum
CostAus$280 million
Annual generationUp to 480GWh expected
Turbines
TowersUp to 90m high, tubular
BladesThree, up to 48m long
Rotor diameterUp to 96m
Blade tip max. heightUp to 138m
Foundation15m diameter, 1.5m high, reinforced concrete
HardstandCrane hardstand approx. 22m x 40m





Rottnest Island wind farm

This wind farm, consisting of a single Enercon E-40 turbine and belonging to Verve Energy, is situated on the popular tourism island about fifteen kilometres off the coast at Perth.


Rottnest Island wind farm summary data
Status# TurbinesMW eachTotal MW Completion dateLat.Long.
Operating10.60.6 September 2006S 32.00°E 115.54°


Powercorp were the principal contractor for this project. The project cost was Aus$3 million.

According to the Rottnest Island Authority, the wind turbine produces about 35% of the power needed on the island. Wind turbines had been tried unsuccessfully some years ago, but until the installation of the current one, the island had been reliant on diesel-generated power. Apparently some of the power from the turbine is used to desalinate sea water for the island's water supply.

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This section written 2009/07/03

Minor wind farms in WA

Less than 1MW and at least 20kW

This list quite probably does not include all the 'wind farms' within the above range, and there would certainly be many small wind generators below the 20kW level that are not mentioned on this page. These pages, Wind in the Bush, are predominantly concerned with large, utility scale, generators.

All these farms are operating, all capacity figures are in kilowatts
Alphabetical order
Location/nameDeveloperOwnerConnection
or purpose
Year
commissioned
Turbine
make
Turbine
capacity
No.
turbines
Total
capacity
ArmadaleSteel Dale IndustriesSteel Dale IndustriesGrid 1997Westwind30130
Cocos (Keeling) Island Power Corp/Diesel & Wind Systems Power Corp/Diesel & Wind SystemsWind/diesel 2005Westwind20480
Exmouth AdvancedWestern PowerHorizon PowerWind/diesel 2002Westwind20360
MurdochRISERISEResearch 2000Westwind20120
Swan ValleyWestern PowerNyungar CommunityGrid 1998Westwind10220



 
Updated 2009/07/10


Other proposed wind farms

In addition to the wind farms detailed above several others have been proposed (table below).

If and when these wind farms look likely to be built, and as I get more information, I will write them up in more detail. If any readers have information concerning this wind farm I would appreciate a note, my email address is at the top of this page.

Until a wind farm gets at least to the point where an application for approval has been submitted to the relevant authority it may be little more than wishfull thinking and is not worth covering in more detail than that below.



Wind farms that have been proposed in WA

All capacities are in megawatts, alphabetical order
Project nameSponsoring CompanyConnectionTurbine
make
No.
turbines
Turbine
capacity
Total
capacity
Status Location
CarnarvonHorizon Power Wind/diesel??? 5.0Proposed780km N of Perth
Milyeannup VerveGridGE232.4 55.0ProposedNear Augusta
Mt Barker Skyfarming or
Mt. B. Power Company?
GridEnercon 0.832.4Proposed Near Albany
Mumbida VerveGridGE342.4 81.0ProposedNear Geraldton
Walkaway 2 InfigenGrid???94Dev. applic. completedGeraldton





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On this page...
Albany wind farm
Alinta wind farm
Badgingarra wind farm
Bremer Bay wind farm
Carnarvon wind farm
Cocos (Keeling) Island
Collgar wind farm
Contents
Coral Bay wind farm
Denham wind farm
Denmark wind farm
Emu Downs wind farm
Esperance wind farms
Grasmere wind farm
Hopetoun wind farm
Installed wind power, by wind farm
Introduction
Kalbarri wind farm
Merredin wind farm
Milyeannup wind farm
Minor WA wind farms
Mt Barker wind farm
Mumbida wind farm
Nilgen wind farm
Nine Mile Beach wind farm
Operational WA wind farms
Other proposed wind farms
Rottnest Island wind farm
Salmon Beach wind farm
Ten Mile Lagoon wind farm
Top
Walkaway wind farm
Walkaway 2 wind farm
Wind farms by region
Wind power in WA
1