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$1.5B project fast tracked for approval

North West Minerals Province
North West Minerals Province

Authorities will accelerate the regulatory process for a $1.5 billion energy development in North Queensland.

The State Government will fast-track CuString’s CopperString 2.0 High Voltage Transmission Line between Townsville and Mount Isa.

COVID-19 stimulus

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed $14.8 million will be provided from the state’s coronavirus economic recovery plan to help the project start construction in the New Year. This is in addition to $1.18M in funding provided back in August 2019 to help the proponent prepare a business case.

This project involves building:

  • a 275 kV AC double circuit transmission line, spanning 1100km between Woodstock and Chumvale
  • support towers made from either galvanised steel self-standing lattice or guyed galvanised steel lattice
  • new sub-stations at Chumvale and Woodstock where the line will be connected to the national electricity grid
  • at least four construction zones with a central camp, project office and temporary construction camps
  • access tracks.

430 jobs

Major development is expected to begin in early 2021 and end in late 2024. About 400 construction workers and a further 30 operational staff will be required. None of the jobs are advertised yet.

The infrastructure is promised to make the North West Minerals Province more attractive for new mining projects and create a further 3500 jobs for at least 30 years.

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“These mines provide jobs to many people in Townsville and reliable and affordable power is vital for their future,” State Member for Thuringowa Aaron Harper said in a public statement.

State Coordinator-General Barry Broe previously declared the development to be a coordinated project, which means it requires strict impact assessment involving whole-of-government coordination, either through a comprehensive environmental impact statement or a targeted impact assessment report.

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