The company behind plans for a new coal-fired power plant at Collinsville says it is moving towards mid-2021 financial close after securing federal funding.
Shine Energy’s proposal for a 1GWe high-efficiency, low-emission (HELE) plant has attracted a $4 million grant under the Supporting Reliable Energy Infrastructure program to assist its feasibility study.
“Today is a momentous time in Australian history and we are excited to announce the move towards project financial close for Australia’s first High Efficiency, Low Emission (HELE) coal fired power plant in Collinsville,” chief executive officer Ashley Dodd said.
“Shine Energy has reached an agreement with the Australian Liberal National Government to secure funding enabling our drive to reach project financial close. This includes finalising EPC, O&M and financial contracts, development approvals, and PPA’s for the Dhalgan Energy Park project.”
The funding move has drawn opposition even within the Coalition Government’s own ranks, and Townsville-based State MP Scott Stewart has been reported in local media saying he would block the bid to build a coal-fired power station at Collinsville.
Mr Dodd says Shine Energy is leading the way in transitioning Australia away from the older coal-fired power plants and replacing them with new HELE technology.
“The Dhalgan Energy Park project is a community-focused project which will deliver an economic pathway for the Birri people to re-establish their nation through economic self-determination and will also deliver economic and social prosperity to regional Queensland,” he said.
“This is the first step to ensure heavy industry is afforded a pathway towards accessing affordable and reliable electricity and given a real option to remain operating within our great Nation State of Australia.
“The project will also place downward pressure on electricity costs which are negatively impacting businesses and households throughout Queensland.”
Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said the project would create local jobs and several reports, including one by engineering firm GHD, showed it would lower power prices in the North.
“When the Collinsville clean coal-fired power project is ready to be constructed, it will be eligible for consideration under the Morrison Liberal National government’s Underwriting New Generation Investments program, which supports targeted investment that will lower prices, increase competition and increase reliability in the energy system,” he said.
“That is exactly what a coal-fired power plant at Collinsville will do. That funding program is open until 2023 and the Collinsville project will be eligible for such support.”