Powering up north’s $1.5 billion network

A BILLION dollar power network project that would connect northwest Queensland with the national grid is one step closer to getting off the ground.

CuString Pty Ltd is proposing to develop a large-scale transmission network to connect the North West Minerals Province with the National Electricity Market at Townsville. CopperString 2.0 founder John O'Brien welcomed the step forward.

GHD manager Shannon Orr, CuString founder John O'Brien and PVW Partners Carl Valentine are part of the CopperString 2.0 Project. Picture: Madura McCormack
GHD manager Shannon Orr, CuString founder John O'Brien and PVW Partners Carl Valentine are part of the CopperString 2.0 Project. Picture: Madura McCormack

"The potential for a NAIF loan will assist in the delivery of this critical common-user energy infrastructure in an ­efficient manner so that step-change (large, positive) growth in our minerals sector can be achieved," he said.

"All the modelling from expert advisers demonstrates that long-term wholesale ­electricity prices in Queensland will fall because the CopperString 2.0 investment would allow us to use energy resources more efficiently and the wholesale cost decreases in the northwest will be even more dramatic."

The proponent said it had received "strong interest" from financiers. "CopperString 2.0 is a large complex project that we believe will deliver an $11 billion economic boost to Queensland," Mr O'Brien said.

Queensland's Co-ordinator-General declared CopperString 2.0 a co-ordinated project in April, meaning it requires an impact assessment involving whole-of-government co-ordination.



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