Powerlink has recently published a 'Project Assessment Conclusions Report' (PACR) to maintain the reliability of supply between Clare South and Townsville South.
The 132kV network between Collinsville and Townsville was developed in the 1960s and 1970s to supply mining, commercial and residential loads. A parallel 275kV network was developed more than a decade later to reinforce supply into Townsville and far north Queensland.
Due to their deteriorating condition the 132kV Clare South to Townsville South transmission lines are now reaching the end of their technical service lives. To maintain compliance with the reliability and service standards set out in the National Electricity Rules, Powerlink's Transmission Authority and applicable regulatory instruments, Powerlink must address the emerging condition risks on these lines.
In November 2018, Powerlink published a 'Project Specification Consultation Report' (PSCR) inviting submissions from non-network proponents on possible non-network solutions to address the identified need. Two submissions proposing potential non-network solutions were received in response to the publication of the PSCR. Following discussions with the proponents, and detailed analysis of their proposals, it was concluded that the solutions offered were not technically feasible due to their inability to meet the network’s fault level and voltage control requirements for the area.
A 'Project Assessment Draft Report' (PADR) was published in August 2019 recommending a 10 year life extension strategy of the coastal line with network reconfiguration by December 2021 and decommissioning of the inland line by December 2022. An additional potential non-network solution was received in response to the PADR, which closed on 27 September 2019. This submission has been included in the final analysis of credible options in the PACR.
The outcomes of the economic analysis contained in the PACR remain unchanged from those published in the PADR. The PACR therefore recommends a 10 year life extension strategy of the coastal line with network reconfiguration by December 2021 and decommissioning of the inland line by December 2022 as the most cost effective solution to the identified need.
The indicative capital cost of the RIT-T project for the preferred option is $28.34 million in 2018/19 prices. Powerlink is the proponent of this network project.
In the context of engagement activities with consumers and the general community, Powerlink has assessed this project as ‘complex’ on the RIT-T Stakeholder Engagement Matrix.
A copy of the Project Assessment Conclusions Report is available below.