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Development Assessment Commission to assess all applications for electricity generating plant with a generating capacity of more than 5MW

On 23 May 2017, the Development (Electricity Generators) Variation Regulations 2017 (Regulation) commenced operation. The Regulation applies to propose developments with a generating capacity of more than 5MW that are to be connected to the State’s power system and includes large scale roof top solar photovoltaic panels (solar PV)

In support of the local assessment of generation application proposal under the State Government’s “Our Energy Plan”, the Regulation amendments mean that applications for the proposed development of an electricity generating plant with a generating capacity of more than 5MW, connected to the State’s power system will now be assessed by the Development Assessment Commission (DAC) and not Local Council.

Regulations 70 and 119 amendments

New regulation 70(1) adds an additional particular to the prescribed particulars for consideration under sections 49(2) and 49A(1) of the Development Act 1993 (SA) (the Act) requiring a Certificate from the Technical Regulator if the proposed development is for the purposes of the provision of electricity generating plant with a generating capacity of more than 5MW that it is to be connected to the State’s power system.

New Regulation 119 imposes a fee of $375 payable to the Technical Regulator for the issue of a certificate.

Schedule 1A, 3, 5 and 10 Amendments

A new subclause 2 under scheduled 1A, clause 10 requires development plan consent for the installation, alteration, repair or maintenance of solar PV that has a generating capacity of more than 5MW and is connected to the State’s power system.

Previously, under Schedule 3 of the Regulations, unless installed in a local heritage place and visible at ground level, a PV system on the roof of a building under 100kg was not considered to be development. Under the Regulation amendment, if the PV system exceeds 5MW (large scale solar) and is to be connected to the State’s power system, it will now be development within the meaning of the Act.

Schedule 5 has been amended to include a new clause 12 which requires any application to DAC under new Schedule 10, clause14 (see below) to be accompanied by a certificate from the Technical Regulator certifying that the proposed development complies with the requirements of the Technical Regulator in relation to the security and stability of the State’s power system.

Schedule 10 has been amended to include a new clause 14 making DAC the decision maker for development for the purposes of the provision of electricity generating plant (as defined in the Electricity Act) with a generating capacity of more than 5MW and connected to the State’s power system.

If you require any advice in relation to the Regulation amendments and how they may impact your project, please contact Kathryn Walker or one of our team.

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