Clive’s Queensland Coal Power Plant Plan Snubbed

Clive Palmer - Coal power

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the state does not need Clive Palmer’s proposed 700 MW coal fired power station – and Mr. Palmer is not happy.

Earlier this week, Waratah Coal Chairman Clive Palmer announced his intention to build a $1.5 billion 700 MW “high efficiency low emission ultra-supercritical” (HELE) coal-fired power station in Queensland’s Galilee Basin.

Premier Palaszczuk wasn’t impressed, stating:

“Queensland does not need another coal-fired power station. We have the youngest, most efficient fleet of coal-fired power stations in the nation, we are the energy powerhouse.”

In an interview with Sky News, Mr Palmer hit back, saying that he didn’t want government money for the project and he wasn’t looking for handouts. He’s also threatened legal action if the proposal is blocked.

“Of course we’ll take her to court and give her a good touch-up,” said a clearly irate Mr. Palmer. ” She needs it, she’s done nothing as Premier for many, many years.”

It was an interesting choice of words and the rest of his tirade was if nothing else, entertaining (and a little disturbing) – reminiscent of Joh Bjelke-Petersen’s “Joh-speak”.

On Monday, Mr. Palmer also released a video under the banner of his United Australia Party on Australian electricity prices; leading in to his coal power plant announcement.

Mr. Palmer says overseas companies are doing well based on cheap energy from Australia in the form of coal, while Australians suffer high electricity prices.

Channeling U.S. President Donald Trump, he states:

“Don’t let it happen. Fight for your country, make Australia great, put Australia first – together we can achieve the extraordinary.”

Clive’s Coal Powered Fantasy?

Solar Citizens said Mr. Palmer has form on making big announcements and then failing to follow through – such as his proposal to build the Titanic II.

However, he did follow through with Palmersaurus, although it was described as possibly the saddest place on Earth and subsequently went the the way of the dinosaurs.

Solar Citizens says Palmer’s plan is a “minnow” compared to the clean energy capacity currently planned for the region

“The solar power stations already being developed in Central Queensland will create more jobs, more investment and bring down power prices faster than Clive Palmer’s latest crazy scheme,” states the group.

Two large solar power stations are under construction in the region and ten are in the planning stages, involving a combined investment of  $3 billion. Solar Citizens says these projects are expected to create 4,400 jobs during construction, plus 200 ongoing full-time jobs.

“That’s twice as much investment, and 3-4 times as many jobs as Clive’s coal-fired fantasy – and these projects are much more financially viable.”

Another very important aspect is all this renewable energy capacity will be zero emissions, unlike Mr. Palmer’s plant.

In May this year, the Clean Energy Council reported investment value in large-scale solar power projects in Queensland made up more than half of the national total.

Queensland’s Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy is yet to receive application from Waratah Coal related to Mr. Palmer’s proposal.

About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

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