Origin Energy to build gas power station in Queensland

Jun 13, 2007 02:00 AM

Origin Energy is set to build a 630 MW gas-fired power station in Queensland.
"The Darling Downs power station will be the biggest combined-cycle power station in Australia, producing enough power to supply the equivalent of 400,000 Queensland homes," Origin said.

The energy supplier said it had completed contract documents with contractors, including GE and CH2M Hill, to build the $ 780 mm power station near Braemar.
"Construction is expected to begin in August 2007, with commissioning to occur in the fourth quarter of 2009, and ramping up to full commercial operation in the first quarter of 2010," Origin said.

The plant will consume up to 44 petajoules of gas a year when it becomes fully operational, with the gas sourced from Origin's coal seam gas reserves at Spring Gully and Walloons.
"The development of these fields, associated pipeline infrastructure and other project costs will be about $ 500 mm," the company said. "This stage of development will directly employ an average of 140 people during the construction phase and up to 30 people once fully operational."

Origin managing director Grant King said the development would result in one of the most competitive power stations in the national electricity market because it would use coal seam gas that Origin owned, as well as its competitive location and low life-cycle cost of the plant, which includes construction and long-term maintenance costs.
"The power station will be able to operate from intermediate to full base-load capacity, and it will emit about half the greenhouse gas emissions that a coal-fired power station using current technology would create," Mr King said. "This will save 2.5 mm tons of greenhouse gases a year -- the equivalent of taking 600,000 cars a year off the road."

The project, for which regulatory approvals are already in place, will be financed over the two- to three-year construction period using a mixture of cash flow generated from Origin's existing business and existing and new financing facilities.

Source: AAP
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