Queensland’s premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has announced the state’s bombshell plan for its coal-fired power as part of its ambitious renewables target.
A bombshell decision has been announced for Queensland where coal-fired power is set to be phased out completely by 2035.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk delivered the news on Wednesday, revealing the state “won’t need coal to power our homes” by 2035 and would be building the “biggest pumped hydro in the world”.
“The world’s largest pumped hydro at Pioneer Burdekin, west of Mackay, will power half of our state,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“I like to call it ‘The Battery of the North’. It will be bigger than Snowy Hydro, generating 2.5 times the electricity.”
The plan comes as part of the state’s target for 80 per cent of its energy to be renewable by 2035.
Queensland’s state-owned coal-fired generators would be re-purposed into green energy suppliers and used as back up until its her hydro storage was reliable.
The state’s Stanwell power station was originally due to shut in 2046. It’s not yet known if the plan to stop it burning coal a decade earlier will bring forward its closure.
“As you transition from your coal to your renewables, then you have your pumped hydro is there for storage, plus you also have battery storage,” Ms Palaszczuk told reporters.
“The plan is very clear that until the hydros come on, we only gradually phase down, in relation to the coal-fired power stations. The plan gives certainty to the workers and secondly it gives certainty to the investors.”
The state’s ambitious renewables target would require major funding from both the government and private sector to the tune of $62 billion.
“By 2035, (in Queensland) when stage two comes online, we will have no regular reliance on coal and be at 80 per cent renewable energy … we will keep our coal-fired power stations as back up capacity until replacement pumped hydro energy storage is operational,” she said.
New Hope Corporation Limited (ASX: NHC) shares surged 6.02% to $5.725. The share price of Whitehaven Coal Ltd (ASX: WHC) is up 6.01% at $8.385.