Projects, Renewables, Solar, Storage

Queensland fast-tracks renewable resource projects, boosting jobs

The Queensland Government has fast-tracked approvals for two major resource projects in the Townsville-Mount Isa corridor, prioritising their development to boost jobs and the state’s renewable energy credentials.

Minister for State Development Grace Grace has declared the $7.8 billion Project Green Poly and the Eva Copper Mine Project as “prescribed projects”, allowing the State’s Coordinator-General to assist with approvals and coordination across regulators.

Project Green Poly represents one of Australia’s first integrated mine-to-manufacturing polysilicon supply chains, establishing Townsville as a key renewable supplier. The $7.8 billion investment is expected to create around 4400 jobs during construction and operations of a facility with over 30 years lifespan.

“Project Green Poly will create the Queensland-based polysilicon supply chain the world needs to expand solar and battery energy generation,” Grace said.

“It will further boost the Townsville region as a renewable energy mining, processing and manufacturing hub.”

Meanwhile, the Eva Copper Mine near Mount Isa and Cloncurry offers a potential new supply stream for the Mount Isa copper smelter. With approvals already in place, the project anticipates creating up to 1,250 construction and operational jobs over at least 15 years.

“The Eva Copper Mine plans to provide a new source of copper concentrate that has the potential to feed Mount Isa’s copper smelter,” Grace said. Priorities include establishing renewable energy sources until connection to the CopperString 2032 transmission line.

Both projects align with the state’s $50 million Mount Isa Transition Fund to support the region’s future amid the global shift towards renewables.

Queensland Resources Minister Scott Stewart welcomed the projects’ role in local areas.

“There is a bright future ahead for the North West Minerals Province and the broader Mount Isa region because of projects like this,” he said.

“Harmony Gold’s Eva copper project will support jobs during construction as well as operationally and will add another source to the smelter in Mount Isa.”

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