After taking over ownership and delivery of the CopperString 2.0 transmission line project in March, the Queensland government announced on Monday a $1.3 billion funding tranche to enable publicly-owned energy cooperation Powerlink to undertake detailed design and engineering and environmental assessments for the project.
Powerlink will do these alongside construction partners UGL and CPB. The Queensland government says the funding will get the $5 billion project ready for construction to commence mid-2024.
CopperString 2.0 is an 1,100-kilometre, high voltage electricity transmission network that would connect Mount Isa and the North West Minerals Province to the national electricity grid near Townsville in North Queensland. The government expects 6 GW of renewable capacity to be opened up by CopperString, and is hoping this will kickstart a chain of renewably-powered manufacturing in the region.
On Monday, the government said CopperString will be “calling for response to tenders from local North Queensland companies.”
“It builds on more than 40 works packages that have been release for Expression of Interest,” the announcement said. “The packages cover a range of activities and services such as engineering, construction, environmental management, logistics, camp construction, haulage and communications.”
“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,” the Queensland government added.
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