Wind farm blades of 57 metres unload at Cairns Port

Published: 2nd October 2017

JOINT STATEMENT

Acting Premier and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Curtis Pitt

Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply
The Honourable Mark Bailey

The unloading and transporting of the huge blades as part of Ratch Australia Corporation’s Mount Emerald Wind Farm is underway today in Cairns.

Acting Premier and Treasurer Curtis Pitt said the wind turbine blades will be an impressive sight with each blade 57 metres long and weighing 16 tonnes each. 

“Last week we saw the first shipment of tower sections shipped directly into the Port of Cairns and today we are seeing the blades being unloaded ready to be transported to the Tablelands,” Mr Pitt said. 

“The blades, which arrived at the port yesterday, are part of an estimated 185,000 revenue tonnes of cargo to be delivered over the life of the project. 

“The Mt Emerald Wind Farm project will see the creation of around 150 jobs during the construction phase and represents a significant boost to our local economy, especially for the contractors, suppliers, transport, and logistics companies involved.

“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to ensuring the Port of Cairns continues to develop to facilitate projects such as Mount Emerald Wind Farm, which bring jobs and economic growth to the region.”

Minister for Energy Mark Bailey said the 180 Megawatt and $380 million Mount Emerald Wind Farm was a huge investment in Far North Queensland.

“Once constructed, these will be the biggest wind turbines ever seen in Queensland, over 30 storeys high,” Mr Bailey said.

“Having visited the port earlier this week, I was certainly struck by the sheer scale of the turbines stored at the cargo lay down area.

"Mt Emerald Wind Farm is one of 20 renewable projects totalling 1,800 megawatts committed to or under construction in Queensland, delivering $3.4 billion of investment and over 2,800 direct construction jobs, mostly in regional Queensland. 

“This compares to the complete renewable energy blackout we saw under the LNP where not one large-scale renewable project was commissioned during their term and 1,300 renewable industry jobs were lost. 

“Renewable energy is now the cheapest and quickest way to deliver new generation, which is why we’re focusing on securing the next wave of large-scale renewable energy projects in Queensland through Renewables 400, our 400 megawatt (MW) reverse auction.

“The Mt Emerald Wind Farm blades are being transported directly from the wharf to the newly constructed project cargo laydown area in Tingira Street Portsmith.”

Ports North chair Russell Beer said the four-hectare Tingira Street site had been purpose-built by Ports North to accommodate the wind farm components in Cairns before being transported by road to the windfarm site on the Atherton Tablelands.

“Ports North has been actively working to increase project freight opportunities through the port and the shipping of the Mount Emerald Wind Farm project cargo confirms the capabilities of Cairns as a project shipping port,” Mr Beer said.

Media contact – Amy Hunter 0423 651 484

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