An aerial shot of the site of the new power station.
An aerial shot of the site of the new power station.

$350m power station wins approval

DEVELOPMENT of the new Blackstone gas fired power station is a step closer with Ipswich Council granting planning approval to project developers TRUenergy.

It will now run a global tender process to select a construction partner for the new power station close to the retiring Swanbank B coal-fired power station.

Construction of the new 1500MW power station will be done in stages, with the initial power station capable of producing around 600MW.

TRUenergy senior manager Brian Restall was delighted the Blackstone power station had received approval.

"Ipswich Council has indicated our plans are in line with the council's and the Queensland Government's strict visual amenity, cultural heritage, noise and air emission regulations," Mr Restall said.

"By using the latest Open Cycle Gas Turbine (OCGT) technology available, the Blackstone power station will produce 85% less greenhouse gas emissions than the Swanbank B coal-fired power station.

"The Blackstone power station project will not only deliver a $350 million investment and 400 construction jobs into the Ipswich area, it will also deliver energy security for the Ipswich region and all Queenslanders.

"TRUenergy will continue talking with residents, community groups and neighbours to ensure minimal impact during construction and operations."

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale welcomed the approval and said it was another vote of confidence in the future of Ipswich.

"TRUenergy's commitment to build at Swanbank will boost the number of new jobs available for local residents," Cr Pisasale said.

"Importantly, the gas-fired plant will ultimately be part of a broader plan for this former coal mining land to be transformed into an eco-friendly business and industry park."