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24 Oct 2012 - Construction start for $439m TrustPower Snowtown II wind farm

Snowtown SA, Oct 24, 2012

The turning of the first sod for South Australia's largest wind farm today signals the start of construction for Snowtown Stage II, a 90 turbine expansion of the existing Snowtown wind farm, capable of generating a further 270 megawatts of renewable power for South Australia.

Siemens - Snowtown EnergyIn July, TrustPower, the NZX listed New Zealand electricity company which built Snowtown I in 2008, appointed Siemens as its turn-key supplier for Snowtown II. With the build of the new Snowtown II wind farm, Snowtown as a region will boast a combined renewable energy generation total of up to 370 megawatts.

The project is due to be completed and fully operational by the end of 2014.

"Snowtown is a perfect location for renewable wind generation.  From the time we first considered the Snowtown site we have been delighted with the willingness of landowners, the community and local authorities to work with TrustPower to make this investment in the state of South Australia possible," says Vince Hawksworth, Chief Executive of TrustPower.

Siemens, a global provider of technology for a sustainable future, will be installing leading-edge gearless drive turbines on the site, including the procurement, supply and engineering of substations, switchgear and transformers to connect the wind farm to the grid.

"This wind farm takes renewable energy generation in Australia to the next level. The rotor blades are superior - cast in one-piece they are structurally and aerodynamically best suited for strong wind conditions.  This combined with the world's most efficient gearless direct-drive wind technology, will deliver a wind farm amongst the most technically-advanced and most economically efficient in Australia," says Jeff Connolly, CEO and Managing Director of Siemens Ltd Australia.

South Australia is continuing to lead the way in the generation of renewable energy, with South Australia exceeding the 20 percent renewable energy target and increasing their own renewable energy target to 33 percent.

"Wind power is an increasingly critical part of the worlds energy mix and is an accelerator in the move towards the more sustainable new electricity age," adds Connolly.

The first sod was turned on the site today in a ceremony led by the Minister for Industrial Relations, the Hon Russell Wortley, representing Premier Jay Weatherill.

WHAT: A sod turning ceremony to mark the start of construction will take place at 10.30am Thursday October 25, 2012.

WHERE: A detailed map with instructions is attached. Due to inclement weather the ceremony will now take place at Site 2 at Barunga Gap: Landslide Road, Barunga Gap, off the Snowtown-Bute (bitumen) road.  Follow the signage.

WHO: The event will be attended by the Danish Ambassador to Australia the Hon Børge Petersen; the South Australian Minister for Industrial Relations, the Hon Russell Wortley; Wakefield Council Mayor James Maitland; local land owners and representatives of community organisations.

Interviews and picture opportunities:
Interviews are available with TrustPower CEO Vince Hawkesworth, Siemens Australia CEO Jeff Connolly, the Danish Ambassador to Australia the Hon Børge Petersen; the South Australian Minister for Industrial Relations, the Hon Russell Wortley; Wakefield Council Mayor James Maitland.

The adjacent Snowtown Stage1 Wind Farm has 48 turbines already operational on site, virtually all of which can be pictured from one location.


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