At the Port of Cairns, the first massive wind turbine blades for the $373 million Kaban Green Power Hub have arrived.
The 79-metre, 32-tonne blades are part of the Kaban wind farm being built in far north Queensland that will provide enough renewable energy to power 96,000 Queensland homes and support more than 250 jobs.
Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni said the arrival of the turbines was a welcome milestone for the Kaban wind farm after the Federal Government turned their back on the project.
“The arrival of the turbine blades is a big reminder to Queenslanders that the Morrison Government is so divided on renewables, they used their veto powers to block funding for this project – and no one will ever forget that,” Mr de Brenni said.
“For Queensland’s part, we’ll continue to invest in large-scale storage and renewable projects, rather than cut and run on them, because our clean energy future depends on it.”
Minister de Brenni also mentioned the missed opportunity to manufacture the equipment locally due to the Federal Government’s “ambivalence toward renewables and manufacturing”.
“The Palaszczuk Government’s energy policy has delivered significant global investment and jobs through this project, however what would deliver an even better outcome for Queensland and the nation would be a national renewables manufacturing industry policy, and only Labor stands for that,” Mr de Brenni said.
“Only Labor at both state and federal levels can provide energy and local jobs policy certainty to investors, businesses and Queensland workers.”
CleanCo, the government’s renewable energy company, will buy all of the 157MW of energy anticipated to be generated at the wind farm near Ravenshoe, as well as control dispatch to the market.
The project, according to CleanCo Interim CEO Darryl Rowell, is a crucial component of CleanCo’s strategy to grow its portfolio, which includes a commitment to facilitate the introduction of 1,400MW of new renewable energy into the market by 2025.
The wind farm construction comes on the back of a $40 million investment by Queensland’s publicly-owned Powerlink to upgrade the transmission line between Cairns and Townsville from 132kV to 275kV.
According to Powerlink CEO Paul Simshauser, the Tumoulin switching station is advances stages of construction as Queensland’s first Renewable Energy Zone (QREZ) is gradually taking shape.
“There are currently 30 people on site at Tumoulin working to connect this wind farm into the grid, with completion due in October this year,” Mr Simshauser said.
“We’re pleased to be able to call on the support of Ravenshoe locals to deliver this project, with Kidner Concrete supplying over 1000m3 of concrete and Dempsey Cranes and Construction for heavy plant hire.”
The blades, together with the towers and other components, will be kept in Cairns for delivery to the site after they have been unloaded.
The components will then be placed into big prime mover trucks and transported 180 kilometers to a site near Ravenshoe.