WA outlines pipeline corridor
The Western Australian Government has selected a preferred corridor and operational model for a new 350 kilometre natural gas pipeline to be constructed from Bunbury to Albany.
The new pipeline is expected to have a capacity of up to 12 terrajoules of gas per day and will serve over 100,000 residents.
Premier Colin Barnett and Regional Development Minister Brendon Grylls said the pipeline would serve Manjimup and towns along the corridor, including Donnybrook, Bridgetown and Mount Barker.
“The Bunbury to Albany gas pipeline will deliver secure, reliable and safe energy to support future economic and population growth in the South-West and Great Southern regions,” Mr Barnett said.
“As well as making reticulated natural gas schemes possible for householders along the pipeline route, it will create new opportunities for existing industries and attract new investment.”
The Premier said the pipeline would be designed, built and operated by a private sector proponent. The State Government, through Verve Energy, would retain an interest in the project in conjunction with the successful proponent.
Expressions of interest from qualified companies will be called in early to mid-November.
The successful proponent would identify an easement up to 50m wide within the corridor and be responsible for consulting and negotiating with landholders and communities, and for obtaining relevant environmental, Native Title and planning approvals.
The pipeline will have minimal impact on the environment and private land use. Although the area will be protected under the Dampier to Bunbury Gas Pipeline legislation, activities such as cropping and grazing would still be permitted on land within the easement.
The Premier said the Government would co-fund the project through a mix of upfront capital and an ongoing subsidy. The cost of the project, and the extent of the Government’s financial contribution, would be determined as part of the tender process but early estimates were for a capital cost of $135million, inclusive of construction, reticulation and conversion of existing appliances.