Palaszczuk Government to own and deliver Copperstring 2.0

Published Tuesday, 07 March, 2023 at 12:36 PM


Premier and Minister for the Olympic and Paralympic Games
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment
The Honourable Cameron Dick

Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen and Minister for Public Works and Procurement
The Honourable Mick de Brenni

Minister for Resources
The Honourable Scott Stewart

  • Queenslanders to own 100% of Copperstring 2.0 as part of SuperGrid
  • Expanded $5B investment to deliver higher capacity power line to connect to the largest renewable energy zone in the nation and more than $500 billion in critical minerals
  • Unlocks the next mining boom in critical minerals
  • Makes North Queensland the epicentre for renewables manufacturing, minerals processing and hydrogen during the clean energy industrial revolution.

The Palaszczuk Government will deliver the 1,100 km CopperString 2.0 project to unlock Australia’s largest renewable energy zone and more than $500 billion dollars in new critical minerals in North Queensland.

Early works on the $5 billion project will start this year with construction planned to commence next year.

CopperString 2.0 will connect vast renewable wind and solar resources with critical minerals mining and processing that can be used to make batteries and renewables in North Queensland unlocking more, good secure jobs.

Construction is expected to support 800 direct jobs over six years and thousands of new jobs in critical minerals mining, manufacturing and construction of renewables.

Publicly owned transmission business Powerlink will lead work on the project.

Quotes attributable to Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk:

“CopperString is the most significant investment in economic infrastructure in North Queensland in generations. Unlocking affordable renewable energy and our critical minerals will benefit Townsville, Mount Isa and every town in between – unlocking thousands of jobs and billions in investment.

“Townsville will become a renewable manufacturing epicentre between the world and the largest renewable energy zone in the nation and the world class North West Minerals Province.

“CopperString ensures that Mount Isa will continue to be the heart of the North West Minerals Province”.

“CopperString and the Townsville critical minerals demonstration plant will act as a magnet for investment into North Queensland during the clean energy industrial revolution and that means good secure mining and manufacturing jobs for Queenslanders”.

Quotes attributable to Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick:

“The pressures on Australia’s energy system in recent years have once again proved the benefits of Queensland’s public ownership of our electricity assets.

“Our Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan makes clear that we will own 100 per cent of our transmission assets.

“This announcement delivers on that commitment.

“And we can only deliver on this commitment because at least $500 million of the cost is being delivered through our new progressive coal royalty tiers.”

Quotes attributable to Energy Minister Mick de Brenni:

“Our Queensland SuperGrid, the nation’s largest, allows Queensland to produce, use, and export the next era of high value extracted minerals–through the renewable energy that the world is craving, we’ll create literally tens of thousands of well paid jobs for generations to come.

“Building this transmission line opens up 6,000 megawatts of potential renewable energy in the North Queensland Renewable Energy Zone, creating more jobs than our state has ever seen in a new, decarbonised resources sector stretching from Townsville to Mt Isa–and they’re starting right now, with early works packages to be rolled out almost immediately.”

Quotes attributable to Resources Minister Scott Stewart:

“Queensland has vast reserves of critical minerals, such as copper, zinc, vanadium and cobalt, that the world is demanding to produce batteries and renewable energy as part of their plans to decarbonise.

“Copperstring 2.0 will help create opportunities for resources companies to develop critical minerals projects and the broader North West Minerals Province.

“This announcement is bigger than just Townsville and North Queensland, it’s a Eureka moment for the whole world.”

Project facts:

  • Copperstring 2.0 is a 1,100 kilometre, high voltage transmission line proposal to connect the North West Minerals Province to the National Electricity Market.
  • Townsville to Hughenden proposed to be 500kV
  • Hughenden to Cloncurry proposed to be 330kV
  • Cloncurry to Mount Isa proposed to be 220kV
  • Early works to start this year and construction next year. Project expected to be completed by 2029.
  • The project scope now includes an increase in transmission capacity for the section between Townsville and Hughenden, from 330kV to 500kV, to unlock the renewable energy potential of the region. The estimated project cost has been updated for current global supply chain conditions.

Highlights of the $62 billion Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan include:

  • 70% of Queensland’s energy supply from renewables by 2032, and 80% by 2035
  • Two new pumped hydros at Pioneer/Burdekin and Borumba Dam by 2035
  • New Queensland SuperGrid connecting solar, wind, battery and hydrogen generators
  • Unlocking 22GW of new large-scale wind and solar renewable capacity
  • Publicly owned coal fired-power stations to convert to clean energy hubs, with jobs guarantees for workers
  • Queensland’s publicly owned coal-fired power stations to stop reliance on burning coal by 2035
  • 100,000 jobs by 2040, most in regional Queensland
  • 11.5GW of rooftop solar and 6GW of embedded batteries
  • 95% of investment in regional Queensland
  • Building Queensland’s first hydrogen ready gas turbine.

You can find more information here: Media Resource Centre - Energy