The Queensland Government has allocated $1.3 billion in funding packages to help progress the work on the country’s largest transmission project, CopperString 2032.
The funding will get the project ready for construction to commence mid-2024, and enable publicly-owned energy cooperation Powerlink, alongside construction partners UGL and CPB, to undertake detailed design and engineering and environmental assessments.
The project will be calling for responses to tenders from local North Queensland companies, and will also secure the easements for the CopperString 2032 project, in the near future, and will include the establishment of 100 permanent project jobs, procurement of transmission equipment, delivery of all site investigations and advancement of site development works, including camps and access works.
The $1.3 billion allocation of funding is part of the $5 billion estimated to deliver this game-changing project for North Queensland.
It builds on more than 40 packages that have been released for Expression of Interest. The packages cover a range of activities and services such as engineering, construction, environmental management, logistics, camp construction, haulage and communications.
The CopperString 2032 project will also provide infrastructure to connect the North West to super-fast internet speeds with early works beginning immediately.
Communities along the Flinders Highway are expected to receive early access to superfast broadband by next year.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, said the new $1.3 billion funding project is a significant step forward to allow Powerlink to get started on the game-changing project.
“CopperString 2032 is the largest ever economic development project in North Queensland, and the largest expansion to the power grid in Australia,” Ms Palaszczuk said
“We are proud to invest in this historic project, which will connect $500 billion in critical minerals with the largest renewable energy zone on the east coast of Australia unlocking the next mining boom and jobs across the North West Minerals Province and North Queensland.
“I am excited about the progress we have made so far in planning and designing this project. This funding allows the project to move into the construction phase.”
Powerlink Chief Executive Paul Smimshauser, said the funding for the project is a vital step forward, encouraging Queensland residents to get involved.
“This funding is a vital step to get the necessary planning, design and environmental approvals underway on the project,” Mr Smimshauser said.
“We also want to see the people of North and North West Queensland get involved in this project, as it is a project that will shape their region for generations to come.
“We look forward to working closely with our construction partners, local suppliers and communities to make this project a reality and deliver long-term benefits for North Queensland.”