The Morrison Government is continuing to support the supply of secure, reliable and affordable power for regional and remote communities to drive economic growth and help them get ahead.
The Morrison Government is committing $25.6 million to back 20 microgrid feasibility studies under Round Two of the Regional and Remote Communities Reliability Fund.
This includes more than $4.2m for three projects across Cape York and the Torres Strait.
Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch said delivering reliable and affordable energy to Cape and Torres communities will provide them with greater economic security and help them grow and prosper.
He said every Far North Queenslander, no matter where they live, should be confident that they will have the power they need, when they need it and at an affordable price.
“Microgrids reduce regional communities’ reliance on diesel generation, bringing down the price of electricity bills for households and businesses and cutting emissions,” Mr Entsch said.
“Volt Advisory Group will receive $1,995,000 towards undertaking a detailed study into a renewable microgrid for the Wujal Wujual community.
“This could lead to potential co-ownership with the local Wujal Wujal community and resulting education, employment, and emissions reduction benefits.
“Ener-G Management Group will receive $1,732,940 towards feasibility studies that will investigate microgrid technologies for the Muralug (Prince of Wales) Island and Napranum communities.
“Muralug is an island community in Torres Strait that has no community electricity service while the Napranum community seeks to transition from current reliance upon mining operations for its energy supply to self-generation.
“Finally, Ergon Energy will receive $546,720 towards a feasibility study will focus on the communities of Bamaga, Horn Island, Thursday Island, Palm Island and Magnetic Island.
“The study will lead a transition to renewable energy, emissions reductions and improvement in resilience by displacing imported fossil fuels with local renewable fuel sources.
“It will also analyse viable options to value stack the hydrogen technology with non-energy generation industries, such as the transport industry.
“This funding announcement is a very positive outcome for these Cape York and Torres Strait communities.”
Federal Energy and Emissions Reduction Minister Angus Taylor said regional and remote communities face unique energy challenges and the government is committed to ensuring they are not disadvantaged by unreliable and expensive energy.
He said the studies will investigate whether establishing a microgrid, or upgrading existing off-grid technologies, would better meet the energy needs of regional and remote communities.
“The Regional and Remote Communities Reliability Fund is all about shoring up the supply of secure, reliable and affordable energy for regional Australians and empowering communities to make the choices to best suit their energy needs,” Mr Taylor said.
Through the Regional and Remote Communities Reliability Fund, the Government is providing around $45 million for feasibility studies in over 110 communities across Australia.
The Morrison Government has also allocated a further $50 million for grants, to be administered by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, to support microgrid pilot studies in regional communities.