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Clean energy and renewables in Queensland

Renewable energy and emissions reduction is a huge focus for Australia’s ‘Sunshine State’, with initiatives such as renewable hydrogen production as well as electricity generation from solar, wind and biomass.

Queensland is committed to its 50% renewable energy target by 2030 and through initiatives such as the A$145 million Queensland’s Renewable Energy Zones are growing our position as an investment destination for large-scale renewable energy projects. Queensland’s low cost, clean renewable energy will support the growth of new manufacturing opportunities and help fulfil other energy demand requirements.   

Queensland’s close proximity to Asia, established infrastructure and manufacturing capabilities give it a unique competitive advantage in the production of renewable hydrogen. As part of the Queensland Hydrogen Industry Strategy, the government has set up the Hydrogen Industry Development Fund to support projects in this area.

Solar farms, wind farms, hydroelectricity and geothermal energy plants are increasingly represented along the extensive coast, and inland. This includes 118 solar farms with a combined 20,000MW capacity power industry, homes, business and support remote indigenous communities.

View an interactive map of Queensland's energy generation sources.

Batteries and pumped hydro will enable Queensland’s electricity system to continue to provide electricity reliably and affordably as the level of renewable energy in the system increases.

Energy Queensland has commenced a battery storage trial across five locations in Queensland to support the continued uptake of renewables. This will see the installation of five network-connected batteries in Hervey Bay, Bundaberg, Townsville, Yeppoon and Toowoomba and will collectively store up to 40MWh.

Clean energy success for Queensland rests on the cooperation of researchers, innovators, existing industry and investors, and a number of programs are designed to bring these together, such as:

There are several new training facilities aimed at the renewable energy, hydrogen and advanced manufacturing industries, with the aim to create a qualified, clean energy workforce.

This includes a Queensland Apprenticeships Centre in renewable hydrogen in Beenleigh, a hydrogen and renewable energy training facility in Townsville and school training program in Gladstone.

Queensland currently boasts 44 large-scale renewable energy projects (operating, under construction or financially committed), which represents:

  • A$9.9billion of investment
  • 7,000 construction jobs
  • 5,156 megawatts of clean energy
  • more than 12.6 million tonnes of avoided emissions each year.

Incentives, grants and support

The Queensland Government is working with industry to develop Queensland Renewable Energy Zones, which are set to attract investment and create new opportunities.

Renewable energy sources rely on critical minerals and Queensland is home to many of them. The Collaborative Exploration Initiative provides industry grants to support innovative exploration techniques that promote the discovery and development of 'new economy' minerals.

The Queensland Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund allows energy Government owned corporations (GOCs) to increase investment in commercial renewable energy and hydrogen projects, as well as supporting infrastructure, including in partnership with the private sector.

The Industry Partnership Program will invest A$350 million over four years to continue to grow and create jobs across a number of priority industry sectors including advanced manufacturing, hydrogen, biofutures, biomedical, defence, aerospace and space resource recovery and METS. This is in addition to a range of support and services available to support small businesses, and assist employers to train and upskill their employees.

You may also be able to access a variety of state government resources to support trade and investment, including growth stage capital through the Backing Queensland Business Investment Fund as well as the Investment in Queensland Program.

There is also the Queensland government’s dedicated global business agency, Trade and Investment Queensland, to help international investors.  

Case studies

Sun Metals (a subsidiary of Korea Zinc, the world’s largest zinc producer) has committed to a bright, green future in Townsville. It’s investing in a A$455 million refinery expansion, a A$7 million robotics project, and an integrated solar farm and new green hydrogen facility.

The company will use cutting-edge robotics technology to increase zinc recovery and make it one of the most environmentally friendly zinc refineries in the world.

UK investors United Green showed confidence in Queensland’s renewables sector by purchasing a majority share in the A$350 million Rodds Bay Solar Farm, south of Gladstone. This is United Green’s first foray into the Australian energy market, adding to its impressive list of wind and solar developments in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Idemitsu Australia Resources has launched a biomass trial at its Ensham coal mine near Emerald, which will see crops grown at the site harvested and turned into pellets to fuel Japanese power stations. The project is trialling different crops for commercial pelletisation.