The ASI has welcomed the Clean Energy Finance Corporation’s (CEFC) announcement yesterday on securing funding to develop Australia’s third largest wind farm as a boon for local industry engagement. Not only will the project directly employ around 165 local workers in the construction phase, it will engage another 120 indirectly including 35 of the steel wind towers for the development to be fabricated by Keppel Prince which has established capability in that market. The Victorian-based company has contributed to wind farm projects in Bald Hills, Cape Nelson, Macarthur, Portland, Waubra, Wonthaggi and Yambuk in Victoria; Bungendore, Gullen and Cullerin Ranges and Taralga in NSW; and South Australia’s Lake Bonney and North Brown Hill. ASI Chief Executive, Tony Dixon said it is encouraging to hear bipartisan comments of support with Victoria Industry Minister, Lily D’Ambrosio and the Federal Member for the Victorian seat of Wannon where the development will be undertaken, Dan Tehan MP on the project’s benefit for the local economy. “It is wonderful to witness renewed commitment from both sides of Government for the local steel sector which has invested considerably in advanced capability to support development of renewable energy projects across the country,” he said. The wind towers will also use steel milled by Australian steelmaker BlueScope which is a signatory of the World Steel Association’s Climate Action Program ensuring that the steel is manufactured via processes that minimise environmental impacts wherever possible. ASI National Manager – Industry Development and Government Relations, Ian Cairns said that this project win for an Australian wind tower manufacturer demonstrates quite clearly that given real opportunities to offer competitive solutions, local industry can in many cases offer ample capacity and capability. “It also shows how the clean energy fund can support the development and retention of advanced skills for the new low-carbon age whilst enhancing and generating Australian jobs,” he said.