One Dubbo farming couple are already making the most of the opportunities offered by the renewable energy boom in the Central West.
Tom and Julie Warren, who own the property where the state government made their recent announcement about the Renewable Energy Zone, have been leasing their land to renewable energy for some time.
Mr Warren says he became interested in the idea of having solar panels installed on his property nearly seven years ago, when the project had first started and their land was identified as an ideal placement.
"They were seeking possible areas to set up a solar farm and Dubbo Regional Council said that they were interested and provided them with our number, because we were considered suitable and we agreed to it," Mr Warren said.
Preliminary investigation of the are involved the setup of a weather station, which relayed data to France that confirmed that the land Mr Warren used as a grazier was an ideal location.
"I educated myself about solar energy and green energy and I firmly believe in it, I'm an advocate for it," Mr Warren said.
"While this area here can be used for serial cropping, the solar farm hasn't impacted at all, in fact, it's actually enhanced the carrying capacity for grazing."
Even Mr Warren's sheep seem content to mill about the machinery, although they have to be shorn more frequently and only sheep that won't rub against the equipment are allowed on the land that houses the solar panels.
The project has even provided unexpected benefits, with the dew that collects and then drips off the solar panels helping keep the grass below green and vibrant despite the ongoing hardship of drought conditions.
"We only fed the sheep during the drought for about three months, while everyone else was feeding consistently for two years," Mr Warren said.
"They were living of all the little strips of green that collected along the solar panels."
In addition, the financial arrangement between the Warrens and the solar panel's owners has been very beneficial.
"We're continuing to have the grazing opportunity we had before, everything we get from the solar farm in terms of the lease is above and beyond what we'd normally get."