Clean energy plans for Cloncurry have hit a financial speed bump, but the shire’s Mayor said his council would still do what it could to apply for funding.
Andrew Daniels said getting a wind farm started at Cloncurry was “all about the money”, but his council didn’t have any spare funds to move the project along at the moment.
Cr Daniels first announced the idea in August, and said the proceeds from electricity generated by the turbines would offset rates for residents at Cloncurry and make it a cheaper place to live.
He estimated that if the turbines created $100,000 worth of power every quarter, the average ratepayer would get $800 off for every household.
Cr Daniels said CuDeco had agreed to help fund the energy project, which would cost the shire between $8 and $9 million, and scouted a location 4.5 kilometres out of town for the first wind turbine.
The council will apply for Royalties for Regions funding for the project, but said it didn’t know if the project would qualify.
“The state is concentrating on water infrastructure and roads, and I don’t think we’ll fit the bill with a wind farm,” Cr Daniels said.
“We’ll apply for it, but the only measure of success is what you actually succeed in.”
He said the shire would also stay in touch with federal Industry Minister Ian Macfarlane after his preliminary support of the idea at a pre-election visit to the shire while he was the opposition spokesman for energy and resources.
Cr Daniels said the minister didn’t make any promises during his visit, but he would approach the federal government for support if he missed out on Royalties for Regions funding.
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