Power station to bring 'lifeblood' back to Collinsville
COLLINSVILE wants its 'lifeblood' back.
And plans to re-open a coal-fired power station could do just that.
Residents living in the rural mining town believe the power station's revival would attract families with children to the town struggling to overcoming an aging population.
The project's development is a step closer following a Federal investment of $10 million into energy projects in North and central Queensland.
Dawson MP George Christensen has long championed the benefits of a coal fire station in this region through his Power the North petition. He said the investment would bring the Collinsville power station project to a stage where shovels could break ground.
"We have a company with a proposal on the table ... and this funding will allow them to do all the further investigation they need to get this plan off the ground,” he said.
"Shine Energy, a Traditional Owner Company based in Brisbane, has been investigating this option, and this funding will enable them to undertake the detailed evaluation and feasibility assessments that need to happen next.”
He said studies showed a coal fired power station would put strong downward pressure on electricity prices in North Queensland, be commercially viable and highly profitable.
Pit Pony Tavern owner Janet Lobegeier was focused on the positive social impact the project would have.
"It would bring families to the town,” she said.
"We can build on that and put in more infrastructure.”
The mining town has struggled to retain families because of the unstable resources industry.
A lack of services such as daycare, or non-mine related work, caused families to leave.
"We want the families,” Ms Lobegeier said.
"Because dad works somewhere, mum takes up part-time employment.
"We have plenty of schools which need kids.”
Collinsville Real Estate business developer Trevor Anderson described families the project might attract as the 'lifeblood' of the town.
"Operational jobs mean people can live and bring families here,” he said.
"If you look at the Census, our town is steadily aging.
"We need families to settle here and we need the essential services.”
Former Whitsunday Councillor Peter Ramage said the project was "great news” for the region, although he was sceptical it would eventuate.
"Collinsville powering the north sounds good,” he said.