Big-T Pumped Hydropower Energy Storage project - draft terms of reference for an environmental impact statement

Closes 22 Feb 2023

Opened 21 Jan 2023

Overview

Queensland's Coordinator-General invites you to have your say on the draft terms of reference (TOR) for an environmental impact statement (EIS) for the Big-T Pumped Hydropower Energy Storage project. 

The draft TOR sets out the matters to be studied within the EIS. You are invited to comment on whether the draft TOR adequately covers all the matters the proponent BE Power Projects Pty Ltd must address when preparing the EIS.

About the project

The proponent, BE Power Projects Pty Ltd as Trustee for Big-T Unit Trust, proposes to develop the $1.3 billion Big-T Pumped Hydropower Energy Storage project. The project involves development of a pumped hydropower energy storage project in the Southern Queensland renewable energy zone with the capacity to generate up to 400 megawatts (MW) of continuous electricity for 10 hours per day, and a battery energy storage system with a capacity of 200 megawatt hours (MWh). The proposed project is located approximately 45 kilometres (km) north-east of Toowoomba, Queensland, in the Toowoomba Regional Council and Somerset Regional Council local government areas.

The Coordinator-General declared the project a ‘coordinated project’, under section 26(1)(a) of the State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971 (SDPWO Act) (Qld), triggering the requirement for an EIS.

On 22 March 2022, the delegate for the former Minister for the Environment determined the project to be a ‘controlled action’ under section 75 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) (EPBC 2021/9140), as the project has the potential to impact on matters of national environmental significance (MNES). The controlling provision is listed threatened species and communities (sections 18 and 18A). The project will be assessed under a bilateral agreement between the Australian and Queensland governments (section 45 of the EPBC Act). The Coordinator-General’s EIS evaluation report will be provided to the Minister.

How to comment

Comments on the draft TOR are invited from Saturday 21 January 2023 to 5pm Wednesday 22 February 2023. For information on how to provide comments to the Coordinator-General, please refer to the fact sheet Have your say on draft terms of reference for an environmental impact statement and accompanying comment form, available online and at the public display locations shown below.

The draft TOR is available to view online from Saturday 21 January 2023 to 5pm Wednesday 22 February 2023 at www.statedevelopment.qld.gov.au/big-t.

Should you require access to a computer, please visit the following venues during business hours:

  • Crows Nest Library (John French VC Memorial Library), corner New England Highway and William Street, Crows Nest
  • Esk Library, 19 Heap Street, Esk (hard copy available on request)
  • National Library of Australia, Parkes Place, Canberra
  • State Library of Queensland, Cultural Centre, Stanley Place, South Bank, Brisbane
  • Toowoomba City Library, level 2, 155 Herries Street, Toowoomba (hard copy available on request).

 

Send your comments to the Coordinator-General using one of the following methods:

Email:      BigTPHESproject@coordinatorgeneral.qld.gov.au

Post:        Attention: The Coordinator-General

c/ Project Manager, Big-T Pumped Hydropower Energy Storage project
Project Evaluation and Facilitation
Office of the Coordinator-General
PO Box 15517
City East Qld 4002 Australia

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