A $1.3 Billion wind farm could generate up to 25 per cent of the state’s power after its expected completion in 2015.
The wind farm, which will be built about 20km southwest of Ardrossan, will generate 600 megawatts of electricity per day - the equivalent of approximately 225,000 homes.
The project will consist of 180 turbines, making it the state’s largest wind farm.
It will be connected with Adelaide’s main power grid through an undersea cable across the Gulf of St Vincent.
The wind farm is one of Premier Mike Rann’s major projects and follows a commitment by the SA Government in June 2009 to increase its renewable energy production target to 33 per cent by 2020.
As part of the project, a pilot power plant is also expected to be constructed to convert biomass - including solid waste, dead trees and clippings - into energy.
The energy produced through the pilot plant will also be fed back into South Australia’s power supply.
Suzlon, the world’s fifth largest wind turbine supplier, based in India, will lead the manufacture and installation for the project.
The company has previously constructed six SA wind farms with a capacity of 507 megawatts.
Suzlon Energy Australia Chief Executive, Dan Hansen, said the project would save up to 2600 million litres of clean water, which would be needed to produce the same amount of power from a coal fired source.
Despite a recent Senate report calling for the urgent review of potential health effects of wind farms on nearby residents, Mr Hansen said the project was supported by Yorke Peninsula farmers and local developers.
“The Project will create local jobs, place the region on the global map as a leader in renewable technology and give Yorke Peninsula farmers and landowners the opportunity to diversify their income streams,” he said.
Mr Hansen said construction of the wind farm will create 500 jobs, with a further 50 ongoing positions to be filled following its completion.
There are currently 534 operational turbines in South Australia, which account for 54 per cent of Australia’s wind power.