Industrial sites set for emissions reduction grants

Industrial sites across five states will be given a multi-million dollar funding boost for projects to transition to cleaner energy.

Nine facilities – including alumina and cement refineries, iron ore mines and cobalt and nickel sites – will share in $330 million in federal funds for initiatives to reduce emissions.

The funding forms part of the government’s $1.9 billion Powering the Regions Fund, which aims to support the decarbonisation of industries.

Funding will go towards four projects in Tasmania, two in Western Australia, as well as one in NSW, South Australia and Queensland respectively.

Energy Minister Chris Bowen said the funding would allow for industrial centres to continue as heavy industries shift towards renewables.

“This $330 million investment in Australia’s hard-to-abate manufacturing and mining facilities is about securing the future of high quality, low-emissions products made right here,” he said.

“As global markets change rapidly, we’re supporting Australian industry to not only survive but thrive with our world-class products that support regional jobs across the country.”

The projects are expected to cut 830,000 tonnes of emissions each year, the equivalent of taking 250,000 cars off the road.

The funds include almost $94 million that will go towards the QAL Alumina refinery in Gladstone for energy efficiency upgrades that will reduce coal and gas consumption at the site.

A further $50 million will go to the Adbri cement manufacturing site in Port Adelaide for emission reduction initiatives, while $52.9 million has been earmarked for the Cement Australia facility in Tasmania for kiln upgrades and increasing the use of alternative fuels.

The government will also supply $35 million to the Murrin Murrin cobalt and nickel operations in WA to supplement fossil fuel powers to renewables and batteries.

There will also be $44 million for energy efficiency upgrades at a food manufacturing plant in Nowra on the NSW south coast, while $32.9 million will be spent on emissions reductions at chemical manufacturing facilities in WA.

Another three facilities in Tasmania will share in almost $21 million as part of electrification, fuel switching and alternative fuel trial projects at sites such as iron ore mine and metal manufacturing facilities.

“Northern Tasmania, central Queensland and Western Australia have been industrial powerhouses for generations, and the Albanese government is ensuring that continues,” Mr Bowen said.

The Powering the Regions Fund is part of federal efforts to reduce emissions by 43 per cent by 2030, as well as get to net-zero emissions by 2050.


Andrew Brown
(Australian Associated Press)


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