NQ graziers trial new renewable energy source
A DELIVERY from Belgium to North Queensland will help a grazier transfer his power to renewable energy.
The Intech Energy Container - a self-sufficient hybrid renewable energy tool - arrived at the Port of Townsville yesterday.
It will be tested in a one-year trial as part of a $100,000 joint venture between McKinlay Shire Council, Mount Isa to Townsville Economic Development Zone, Department of State Development, Manufacturing and Planning.
The power pod is equipped with solar panels, a battery and a generator.
It will supply a grazier with off-the-grid renewable energy, in a bid to offer more reliable and affordable electricity for rural properties.
McKinlay Shire Council Mayor Belinda Murphy said while local Ergon crews always worked to get power back on to rural customers as soon as possible after a storm or flood, access issues could delay repairs to the network.
"Single Wire Earth Return lines span hundreds of properties across North West Queensland that could benefit from this independent power source," she said.
MITEZ chief executive officer Glen Graham said the organisation awarded a $55,000 grant to the project from the State Government's Remote Area Board Funding program.
"This is an innovative and collaborative trial to look to the future potential of delivering power to our remote properties with improved reliability and reduction in cost using new technology," Mr Graham said.
A public ballot will be held in December at Julia Creek to determine who receives the technology.
During the trial, interested people will be able to view the system by appointment through McKinlay Shire Council.
Port of Townsville chief executive officer Ranee Crosby said the arrival of a new class of renewable energy cargo at the port came after a boom in container deliveries at the port last financial year.
"Growing container trade has been powered by imports of solar project cargo, and it is wonderful to see new technologies in the renewable sector being shipped through Townsville Port destined for communities in our region," she said.
In the last financial year the port had a record arrival of containers, up 47 per cent compared to the year before.
The port's annual report shows this was largely driven by renewable energy imports.