Biomass Project, Australia

Aurecon was retained by Western Australia Biomass Pty Ltd to facilitate the planning and environmental approval process for a proposed biomass power generation plant in Diamond Mill, Western Australia. 

The proposed 40 MW (nominal) biomass plant consists of a conventional steam cycle plant capable of generating approximately 322 GWh (net) / annum of electrical power, which will be supplied to the South West Interconnected System (SWIS). The proposed plant will also provide electricity supply for the future growth of the region.  The plant was proposed to address the:

  • Availability of fuel 
  • Demand identified in the locality and the broader district for augmentation of existing power generation
  • Need for new renewable generation capacity

The plant will be fuelled by approximately 380,000 tonnes/annum of plantation waste purchased from independent contractors who will collect, process and deliver the biomass fuel to the plant.

The fuel supply will be a combination of Eucalyptus Globulus (Bluegum) and Pinus Radiata (Pine). The volumes to be supplied will be drawn from plantations within a maximum radius of 100 km and transported by road from the source to the plant. 

The proposal for a biomass power generation plant was referred to the Environment Protection Authority in October 2007. The level of assessment for the project was set at Public Environmental Review (PER) with a four-week public review period.

To date, all planning and environmental approvals have been granted and the project is awaiting financial approval for construction to commence.

Aurecon’s services for the plant included:

  • Assessing key environmental factors, including air quality, noise, sustainability, transport, water and waste management, and social and economic impacts
  • Liaison with government, stakeholders and communities
  • Providing specialist technical advice
  • Preparing planning and environmental documentation for regulatory authorities
  • Undertaking environmental impact studies.

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