The Queensland Government is delivering more than $2 billion in large-scale storage, renewable energy projects and generation and transmission investment through the 2022-23 State Budget.
Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni said the investment will power more jobs in more industries across the state.
“This budget ensures Queensland will maintain its standing as a national energy leader for many years to come,” Mr de Brenni said.
“It will also ensure Queenslanders maintain a stake in their energy future through their publicly owned energy corporations, with the retention of dividends supporting continued renewable energy, storage and strategic network investments for the benefit of all Queenslanders.
“We are continuing to invest in those corporations to ensure reliable, clean and affordable power for Queenslanders at a time it has never been more important to do so.”
Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick said the new energy investment will complement the state’s existing $2 billion Queensland Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund.
“This fund is enabling our government owned generators to remain competitive by expanding their fleets to include cutting-edge renewables,” Mr Dick said.
“Renewables create jobs, lower power prices and help our state reduce emissions.”
The government will invest $1.41 billion to improve electricity supply through Energy Queensland, which services some 2.3 million Queenslanders across the Energex and Ergon Energy and Yurika networks.
Mr de Brenni said system reliability will be reinforced thanks to a $239.7 million investment in Powerlink.
“This will see upgrades or replacement of ageing high-voltage assets, as well as continue transmission works to connect the 250-megawatt Kidston Pumped Hydro Project to the National Electricity Grid,” he said.
“That’s backed by the government’s $40 million investment to upgrade transmission lines between Townsville and Cairns as part of the Northern Queensland Renewable Energy Zone initiative.
“Stanwell will benefit from a $300.1 million investment to ensure the reliability and efficiency of its generation plant, while supporting renewable generation, energy storage and renewable hydrogen.
“This includes $85.1 million towards its $207 million Southern Queensland Renewable Energy Zone battery project, $68.2 million for Wambo Wind Farm, $66.7 million to upgrade Tarong Power Station, and $50.4 million to upgrade Stanwell Power Station.”
A further $15 million from the Queensland Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund will progress the Central Queensland Hydrogen Project.
CS Energy’s $133.4 million capital expenditure includes $45 million to refurbish and rebuild infrastructure at Callide Power Station, $37.4 million towards its $150 million investment in battery storage at Chinchilla, and $30.3 million to upgrade Kogan Creek Power Station.
Stanwell and CS Energy are investing in large-scale batteries at Tarong and Chinchilla, respectively, adding a combined 250 megawatts of new storage capacity to Queensland’s electricity grid, supporting the continued uptake of renewables.
Mr de Brenni said the government is also investing $47.3 million to build CleanCo’s renewable and firming portfolio.
“That includes $16.9 million to develop the Karara Wind Farm, $13.6 million to develop Kogan North Gas Fields, $7.7 million to overhaul and maintain existing assets at Wivenhoe Power Station and $4.4 million for maintenance and upgrades at Swanbank E Power Station,” he said.
“That’s on top of our $13 million investment to fast-track the business case for pumped hydro storage at Borumba Dam, and a $35 million commitment to identify sites for an additional pumped hydro storage site in Queensland.
“We know the best way to drive power prices down is to put more renewables and storage into the system, and that’s exactly what this budget delivers.”
An additional $10 million will be invested over two years as part of the Queensland Microgrid Pilot Fund to boost resilience of regional and remote communities through initiatives that enable decarbonisation and energy independence.