Powerlink, alongside construction partners UGL and CPB, has released 40 works packages for the estimated the $5 billion (USD 3.19 billion) CopperString 2032 project, an 1,100-kilometre, high-voltage electricity transmission network that is to connect Mount Isa to the national electricity grid near Townsville in north Queensland.
The project, acquired by the Queensland government earlier this year, would integrate the state’s isolated northwest into the National Electricity Market (NEM) and pave the way for the development of renewable energy projects, including large-scale wind and solar, in the region while also opening up access to large deposits of minerals seen as key to the energy transition.
Powerlink said the works packages released this week encompass a range of activities and services, including engineering, construction, environmental management, logistics, camp construction, haulage and communications.
Ian Lowry, Powerlink’s executive general manager for major projects, said the release of the packages sends a clear signal to the market that Powerlink is ready to start work.
“Since Powerlink took on this project earlier this year, we have been focused on starting work on the ground as soon as possible,” he said.
“Our process is not just about finding the best value for money, but also about finding the best fit for our vision.”
Lowry said the packages are designed to maximise the opportunities for local businesses and suppliers with Powerlink determined to create a sustainable and resilient supply chain that benefits local communities along the CopperString line.
“This is an opportunity for regional business to register their interest in being a part of a project that will transform north and northwest Queensland for generations to come,” he said.
Powerlink said a series of road shows will be held throughout the project area next month, where local suppliers and contractors will have the opportunity to learn more about the scope and timeline of the project and discuss potential business opportunities.
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