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Queensland Government commits to 80 percent renewable energy by 2035

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    What you need to know

    The Queensland Government released the new Queensland Energy and Jobs Plan (the Plan) on 28 September 2022 which sets out the Queensland Government's plan to deliver its new target of 70% renewable energy by 2032 and 80% by 2035. These targets expand on the Government's  commitment in 2015 to reach 50% renewable energy by 2030. The Government has also committed to work towards 100% renewable electricity for large government sites such as schools and hospitals by 2030.

    How we can help

    We are very pleased to be able to offer tailored workshops on any key aspects of the plan, including:

    • key elements of the plan and proposed design of the QREZ framework;
    • tailored workshop on pumped hydro energy storage projects, including structuring and key issues, drawing on recent case studies;
    • tailored workshop on the development of clean energy hubs, including recent experience working on the developments of similar 'transformation hubs' in the NEM;
    • tailored workshop and case study on the development of hydrogen-ready gas peaking plants; and
    • presentation on the Queensland Zero Emission Vehicle Strategy and Action Plan 2022-2030.

    Please reach out to Dan Brown or Paul Newman if you have any specific questions regarding your potential Queensland renewable project, investment or opportunity. Of course we will be happy to discuss anything that may be of interest to you.

    We have set out the key investments and implementation activities from the Queensland Government's Plan below.

    Coal-fired power stations to be repurposed into clean energy hubs

    The Queensland Government has committed to progressively convert all publicly owned coal-fired power stations into clean energy hubs by 2035 with the support of the Queensland Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund (QREHJ Fund), which has been increased by $2.5 billion to $4.5 billion. The Government have also implemented a new $150 million Job Security Guarantee to support workers from publicly owned coal-fired power stations.

    Battery and storage investment

    The Queensland Government has committed $203.4 million of new funding to advance the investigation of the Borumba (1.5 – 2 GW) and Pioneer-Burdekin (5 GW) pumped hydro energy storage (PHES) projects  which are both currently undergoing initial studies and consultation. The Government will also establish a new publicly owned entity, "Queensland Hydro", to develop government PHES assets.

    The Government has also committed to investing $500 million for new large-scale and community batteries by publicly owned energy businesses through the boosted QREHJ Fund.

    Queensland "SuperGrid"

    The Queensland Government are looking to build Australia's largest "SuperGrid" comprising of around 1,500 km of new high voltage backbone transmission. The Government's priority projects for backbone transmission include the Borumba and Pioneer-Burdekin PHES projects as well as expanding the network between Southern and Central Queensland and connecting Mount Isa to the grid.

    Queensland Renewable Energy Zones

    The Queensland Government has previously established three regions for developing Queensland Renewable Energy Zones (QREZ) in Northern, Central and Southern Queensland to coordinate the development of the 22 GW of additional generation capacity by 2035. The QREZ will be supported by the boosted QREHJ Fund as well as $365 million from Powerlink for the reinforcement of the Gladstone electricity grid.

    Hydrogen investment

    The Queensland Government have committed to investing in a new 200 MW hydrogen-ready gas peaking power station at Kogan Creek to be developed by CS Energy in partnership with Iberdrola. The new power station is intended to provide gas supply and reliability in the short to medium term, with the view to shift towards renewable hydrogen to provide dispatchable power in the long term.

    Expanding on the Queensland Government's Hydrogen Industry Strategy 2019-2024, the Government has committed up to $15 million to expand renewable hydrogen hubs across Queensland. The Government also intends to prepare legislation by 2023 to support the regulation of hydrogen development and use.

    Electric vehicle investment

    Further to existing commitments through the Queensland Zero Emission Vehicle Strategy and Action Plan 2022-2030, the Queensland Government has committed to investing:

    • $12 million for charging infrastructure and trails to support the integration of electric vehicles into the electricity system; and
    • $30 million to make government buildings electric vehicle ready.

    Bio energy and fuels industry investment

    The Queensland Government has committed to investing $4 million to work with the bioenergy industry to investigate options and pathways to expand generation from underutilised biomass waste streams and support bioenergy technology innovation.  The Government also committed to collaborate with the biofuel industry, the Australian Government, customers and other key stakeholders to accelerate the uptake of biofuels.


    The Queensland Government intends on legislating the new renewable energy targets, the Job Security Guarantee and key enabling mechanisms such as the QREZ framework through a new Renewable Transformation Bill.

    The Queensland Government also intends on establishing two new advisory bodies:

    • the Queensland Energy System Advisory Board to develop and provide technical advice to the Government on updates to the Queensland SuperGrid Infrastructure Blueprint from 2025; and
    • the Energy Industry Council to provide advice to the Government in relation to the transition for energy workers and their communities.


    Continue following our Energy Alerts as we provide ongoing updates on key implementation activities supporting the implementation of the Queensland Government's Plan.

    Click here to see our latest Energy Alerts, as part of our Energy Alert Series.

    Authors: Dan Brown, Partner; Paul Newman, Partner; Andre Dauwalder, Senior Associate; and Harriet Curran, Associate.

    The information provided is not intended to be a comprehensive review of all developments in the law and practice, or to cover all aspects of those referred to.
    Readers should take legal advice before applying it to specific issues or transactions.


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