The Queensland Coordinator-General has declared the $14.2 billion Borumba Pumped Hydro Energy Storage project a coordinated project, meaning that assessment of social, economic and environmental matters can begin. 

The project, being developed by Queensland Hydro, involves building a new upper reservoir, as well as a new dam wall that will replace the existing Borumba Dam wall and increase Lake Borumba’s storage capacity from 46GL to 224GL.

It is expected to have the capacity to generate up to 2,000MW of electricity for up to 24 hours at a time.

The community will have opportunities to comment on what should be included in the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) as well as Queensland Hydro’s assessment of the project and proposed mitigations to avoid and minimise impacts.

Geotechnical exploratory drilling has started on the project, in the Southern Queensland Renewable Energy Zone, which will help inform the EIS process.

Queensland Deputy Premier, Steven Miles, said that this marks another step forward for the Borumba Pumped Hydro Energy Storage project, and further progress towards the state’s future as a clean energy superpower.

“Over the past year, we have led the nation in the construction of new clean energy projects, driving new investment and generating good jobs for Queenslanders,” Mr Miles said. 

“Our targets of 70 per cent renewables by 2032 and net zero emissions by 2050 are set to transform our infrastructure, energy system and economy.

Queensland Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen and Minister for Public Works and Procurement, Mick de Brenni, said that the Borumba project will be subject to the Queensland procurement policy, which means the State Government is looking for Sunshine Coast companies and tradies to be part of this big build.

“Borumba will allow us to replace expensive fossil fuels with Queensland’s sun, wind, and water–putting the Sunshine State on the map as a global renewable energy hub,” Mr de Brenni said. 

“Pumped hydro is proven technology, ready to go now, and has been supercharged by a $19 billion investment in our Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan, creating around 2,000 local jobs and securing our renewable energy future.

“Because Queenslanders kept their energy network in public hands, they have the power like nowhere else in the nation to benefit from the clean energy transition.”

Member for Nicklin, Rob Skelton, said that the development of pumped hydro energy storage will play a key role in Queensland’s renewable energy transition.

“It’s all part of our Government’s Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan, to power Queensland homes with cleaner, cheaper and reliable energy.” 

Member for Caloundra, Jason Hunt, said that the declaration of this project represents a major milestone for one of Queensland’s most significant renewable energy projects.

“We’re continuing to pack renewable energy projects to deliver more good Queensland jobs, and reach our renewable energy targets.”

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