The Queensland government has provided updated details and a first look at Stanwell’s most recent large-scale project, which will see the company’s coal-powered station converted into a training facility for new energy technologies, including battery storage, hydrogen, solar, and wind.
The transformation of Stanwell Corporation’s power station will commence with the construction of its $100 million Future Energy and Innovation Training Hub (FEITH), which it intends to provide for future commercialisation testing, research and development, as well as training and education.
Queensland’s Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni said Australia’s ability to fulfil legislated emissions reduction targets is heavily reliant on actions taken in Queensland.
“The first place the Premier and I went following the release of our plan was the Stanwell Power Station to give the workforce the government’s commitment to their job security and outline our blueprint to convert it into a Clean Energy Hub. We’re so serious about our plan that we’re legislating our renewable energy targets — 70 per cent by 2032 and 80 per cent by 2035 — and putting our Jobs Security Guarantee into law.
“We need to set the standard because public ownership gives us an extra layer of accountability to our workers, communities, and the environment, as well as to energy security and affordability for households and businesses.
“We’ve always said that Queensland’s publicly owned power stations will continue to play an important role in our future energy system as clean energy hubs because they are located in strong parts of the network with strategic advantages like grid connection, a highly skilled workforce, established community relationships, and land,” said de Brenni.
The new centre will provide for a real-life, hands-on training ground for the state’s energy employees — facilitating the necessary skill development required for operating renewable energy technologies.
The first phase will begin in late 2023, with the establishment of basic infrastructure and civil works.
Later phases of the project will include a skills academy and demonstration centre where the Queensland energy community can visit to learn about new information relating to energy transition.
Stanwell CEO Michael O’Rourke said: “The FEITH project will be the visible bright spark of Stanwell’s transformation to clean energy is for FEITH to be a catalyst for advancing the energy transformation, not just at Stanwell, but for the entire state.
“It will increase our understanding of new energy technologies and their application in building Stanwell’s renewable energy portfolio and driving the development of Queensland hydrogen industry,” said O’Rourke.
The Stanwell power station will be fully operational as a clean energy hub by 2032 to 2033 and is completely supported by a legislated Job Security Guarantee for energy workers.
The 2023-2024 budget for Queensland’s Big Build has committed a record $19 billion to delivering more renewable energy to the state’s SuperGrid.
Queensland’s Energy and Jobs Plan aims to unlock 100,000 new industrial jobs in hydrogen, renewables, manufacturing and critical minerals.