Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Queensland’s economic development groups want ‘clean energy corridor’

Member for Kennedy Bob Katter, one of the kingmaker Independents deciding who will form government, has put high on his priority list securing support for a ‘clean energy corridor’ of climate-friendly solar, wind and other zero-emission power plants between Townsville and Mount Isa.

North Queensland considers gas plants vs clean energy link for Mt Isa region * Kerrie Sinclair   The Courier-Mail  September 06, 2010 THE power play in Canberra may also determine the future of power generation in Queensland’s northwest.

Member for Kennedy Bob Katter, one of the kingmaker Independents deciding who will form government, has put high on his priority list securing support for a ‘clean energy corridor’ of climate-friendly solar, wind and other zero-emission power plants between Townsville and Mount Isa.

Labor appears more supportive than the Coalition.The Mount Isa region’s only large power station, which is owned by state-held CS Energy, is stranded from the grid, is ageing, and needs to be upgraded or supplemented.The State Government has opted to leave the decision on new power sources to the companies that are the region’s biggest energy guzzlers.These are mainly Xstrata, the Swiss miner that owns Mount Isa Mines and is the world’s biggest exporter of coal for power stations, as well as BHP Billiton and Incitec Pivot………

Clean energy corridor supporters say it will bring into the National Electricity Market solar, wind, biomass and geothermal plants that don’t emit any greenhouse gases and can meet up to a fifth of the federally mandated target to derive 20 per cent of Australia’s electricity from zero-emission sources by 2020.

Scientists say the world’s annual carbon emissions – mainly from burning coal, oil and gas for electricity and transport – must peak about 2015, then fall away fast to give a decent chance of keeping temperature and sea-level rises manageable for most countries. Queensland’s reliance on coal and gas for power make it one of the world’s biggest per-capita carbon emitters. Over half of Xstrata’s global carbon emissions come from its Australian operations.

Local councils and economic development groups favour the clean energy option and hope federal funds, perhaps about $100 million, can be made available to cover higher costs in the transmission link’s early years……..

Local councils say the fleet of renewable power plants the link will catalyse will help ringfence the region from the pain of rising gas and black coal prices.

BIS Shrapnel says renewable power costs are expected to equal or undercut conventional gas and coal-fired power.

Australian and US solar developers expect large-scale solar power to achieve grid parity with fossil fuel power within several years and possibly some time in 2011.

North Queensland considers gas plants vs clean energy link for Mt Isa region | Cour

September 6, 2010 - Posted by | climate change - global warming, energy, Queensland, solar, wind | , , , , , , ,

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