“It is slated to be one of Australia’s largest [solar farms] – a 300-megawatt project,” Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
“So if we can get that up and operating in Gladstone, that is extra jobs for the region as well.
“As we unite and recover [from the COVID-19 pandemic], we need to make sure we are powering our regions and make sure we have a pipeline of projects coming through.”
Solar power is not the only energy with a bright future in Gladstone.
“There is huge potential with hydrogen … Gladstone led the way with LNG and hydrogen has enormous capacity here, which would be hundreds of jobs,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher said the overseas investment showed Queensland’s renewable energy sector was competitive internationally.
“This is United Green’s first entry into the Australian energy market, and they’ll add Rodds Bay to an impressive portfolio of utility-scale wind and solar developments in Europe, Asia and the Middle East,” he said.
Renew Estate director Vincent Dwyer said the Rodds Bay project was a commitment to a sustainable future for the Gladstone region.
“Rodds Bay will not only create direct employment through jobs on site but will create major opportunities for suppliers across a range of areas,” he said.
“We’re also continuing to work closely with [Trade and Investment Queensland] to connect into local supply chains as part of delivering jobs and regional economic development.”
United Green chief investment officer Tim Mole said he looked forward to working with local businesses during the coming months.
“The strength of support for this project from the Queensland government, the local community, local businesses and other stakeholders gives us great confidence in taking this project forward to construction,” he said.
Energy Minister Anthony Lynham said if the project proceeded, it would boost Queensland’s 6600 megawatts of operational and committed renewable energy generation capacity.
Toby Crockford is a breaking news reporter at the Brisbane Times