Locals set to benefit first in new Local Energy Partnerships

Published Wednesday, 18 October, 2023 at 09:00 AM


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

Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympic and Paralympic Games Infrastructure
The Honourable Dr Steven Miles

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

  • New frameworks to ensure energy providers work closely with councils and local communities to ensure locals benefit as part of the energy transition
  • Range of multimillion dollar initiatives to facilitate local partnerships and empower regions.
  • Record investment in Queensland’s regions helping lead global energy landscape.

The Premier announced a government initiative to work with landholders and communities to ensure locals benefit first from the energy projects in their region.

This announcement is backed by $9.25 million investment, through the Local Energy Partnerships initiative.

Following meetings with Local Government representatives from all across the state, regional communities will officially be recognised as full partners working together to help regional communities benefit from our energy transition.

The initiatives to deliver on local energy partnerships come after months of consultation with regional communities on the best ways to supercharge local outcomes from the state’s Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan.

Through the Partnerships initiative the government will also establish the first Community Leader Energy Councils to formalise channels for engagement on the first renewable energy zones.

As well as ensuring energy providers and local councils work collaboratively to ensure the best outcomes for locals, today’s commitment will help local businesses become part of the supply chain.

Quotes attributable to Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk:

“I’ve heard directly from landowners how important it is that they benefit from our renewable energy future.

“Our government will continue to invest in good jobs and new industries, while working with landholders over the life of energy projects.

“Local voices need to be heard and that’s what this partnership is all about.”

Quotes attributable to the Deputy Premier, Steven Miles:

“Our mighty regional communities have not only built this great state, but they are the key to Queensland’s future success as a clean energy superpower.

“Regional Queenslanders have told us how their communities can best benefit from the energy transformation, so we will act by embedding local voices in everything we do.

“The Big Build of the Queensland SuperGrid is the biggest economic opportunity in a generation, so it’s important to our Labor Government that it leaves a generational legacy of prosperity for our regional communities.

“Because Queenslanders kept their energy network in public hands, Queensland has the power like nowhere else in the nation to ensure a secure transition to renewable energy and to guarantee good jobs for our energy workers.

“Over the next century Queensland will show the world how to decarbonise and we will power global economies with home-grown clean energy, mining and manufacturing.”

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Energy Mick de Brenni:

“Queenslanders should be proud that we are establishing ourselves as the nation’s best practice state for the rollout of renewable energy projects.

“We need to set the standard because Queensland’s public ownership gives us an extra layer of accountability to our workers, communities, and the environment, in addition to energy security and affordability for households and businesses.

“Today’s release of the Local Energy Partnerships initiative creates the platform that enables genuine and ongoing engagement on benefit sharing and community leadership, as we navigate the Queensland decarbonisation pathway.”

Further information

The Local Energy Partnerships

  • $6.1M total to partner with peak and community bodies and industry to improve practice and engagement in the renewable energy sector, explore new technologies and support communities through the energy transformation. This includes $200,000 for environmental non-government organisations to engage stakeholders on the energy transformation and contribute to enhancing environmental outcomes.
  • Establish the first Community Leader Energy Councils to formalise channels for engagement on the first renewable energy zones (REZ).
  • $1.65M over two years for a Local Council Energy Partnership program to work with councils on energy matters.
  • $1.5M for understanding shared land use implications on top of $6M to undertake initial Strategic REZ Readiness Assessment of three renewable energy zone regions. This will include opportunities and priorities for renewable development, infrastructure, road, transport, housing and accommodation, workforce, supply chains, biodiversity, waste management, and social infrastructure.
  • Improving availability of energy information for each region.
  • Working to boost the Office of the Coordinator General’s ability to improve coordination and facilitation of the energy transformation.
  • Investigating an expanded remit of the GasFields Commission Queensland to promote coexistence of renewable energy developments, resources, agriculture and other industries and provide support for communities with a trusted, independent body for information, education and engagement.
  • Investigating additional opportunities for sharing benefits with communities to support the equitable distribution of financial benefits to renewables host communities and explore ways regional households can benefit from renewable energy development.
  • Building opportunities for local businesses by mapping supply chains and providing visibility of the opportunity pipeline from renewable energy development.

Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan

  • The Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan forecasts that regional communities will attract 95 per cent of new clean energy infrastructure investment as well as the vast majority of 100,000 new jobs to be created by 2040.
  • The Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan is already transforming the state into a renewable energy powerhouse and propelling Queensland toward zero net emissions by 2050.
  • Renewable energy targets of 50 per cent by 2030, 70 per cent by 2032 and 80 per cent by 2035 will be legislated to ensure all Queenslanders have access to cleaner, reliable and affordable power for generations.
  • Targeted Renewable Energy Zones will be power and jobs generators, turbo-charging regions. 
  • The largest onshore wind farm in the Southern Hemisphere, the over 1,000MW MacIntyre wind farm south-west of Warwick, is expected to become operational next year.
  • Totalling over 1 million solar panels, the 400MW Western Downs Green Power Hub was completed this year. It has the capacity to power the equivalent of 235,000 Queensland homes.
  • Right now, there are over 50 green hydrogen and ammonia projects being developed in Queensland, most in regional towns and cities. These projects will create thousands of jobs in the hydrogen sector and upskill our workforce.
  • In Gladstone, the cornerstone Central Queensland Hydrogen Project is expected to create almost 9,000 jobs and produce 800 tonnes of green hydrogen a day -- the equivalent to fuelling more than double Australia’s heavy vehicle fleet.
  • In Townsville, the Han-Ho Consortium is advancing with its export-scale building a green hydrogen hub. This project is expected to produce up to 1.8 million tonnes of green ammonia each year and establish a green energy corridor between Australia and Korea.
  • The 5GW Pioneer-Burdekin Pumped Hydro Energy Storage (PHES) project west of Mackay will be big enough to generate up to half of Queensland’s peak electricity demand. It will completely transform the Mackay region.
  • The PHES proposed at Borumba, west of the Sunshine Coast, will have an installed generation capacity of 2GW. $6B has been committed in this year’s Budget to build the project, subject to final environmental approvals.


Minister de Brenni media contact:
Elise Williams – 0482 503 675