15/10/2009 - 13:19

Govt approves Carnegie project funding

15/10/2009 - 13:19

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Carnegie Wave Energy will go ahead with plans to develop its first wave energy project after the state government backed a relocation to Garden Island and reaffirmed its commitment to a $12.5 million investment.

Govt approves Carnegie project funding

Carnegie Wave Energy will go ahead with plans to develop its first wave energy project after the state government backed a relocation to Garden Island and reaffirmed its commitment to a $12.5 million investment.

Environment Minister Donna Faragher and Energy Minister Peter Collier both agreed to continue the funding, which was first flagged earlier this year, through the low emissions energy development fund.

The government had sought advice from its probity auditor, Paxin Group, and the state's chief scientist, after Carnegie decided to relocate the project from Albany to Garden Island.

Garden Island was the preferred location as it was considered to be the lower risk option for the project, which will be a demonstration facility, Mrs Faragher said.

"An assessment of the relocation proposal, completed by the Department of Environment and Conservation, showed it would still meet the original project objectives and probity requirements," she said.

"The contractual conditions placed on the company when the original LEED funding announcement was made in February remain unchanged.

"This means Carnegie Corporation is still required to match every $1 of Government investment with $3 from elsewhere, leading to a direct total investment of $50million in low-emissions electricity generation in WA."

The station will use submerged pumping units on the seafloor to collect wave energy in the form of pressurized sea water, which would generate electricity from a hydroelectric turbine onshore.

The facility will initially produce five megawatts of electricity, which can power about 3,500 households.

The project will generate 30 jobs and save more than 500,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

Mr Collier said the government's investment also give Carnegie a platform to explore the benefits of a larger scale 50MW power station.

Carnegie said it will carry out detailed cost and design activities at the front end of the project.

Shares in Carnegie were unchanged at 22 cents at 15:57 AEST.

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