THE Queensland Department of State Development and Innovation has undertaken the first stage in the formal assessment process for Origin Energy's proposed 1000MW gas fired power station at Spring Gully, 80km north-east of Roma.
"It is planned to construct the power station in two 500MW stages, with the initial 500MW stage likely to come on-line during 2008," said Origin Energy general manager, public and government affairs, Tony Wood.

"It is anticipated that around 30 full-time positions could be created by the project, as well as between 200-400 people during the construction phase."

The power station, if it proceeds, would be supplied with natural gas from central Queensland's large coal-bed methane reserves. Origin Energy is developing some of these fields.

The Department has released the draft Terms of Reference, which once finalised will provide the framework against which the project will be assessed. This follows the Government's declaration in December 2004 that the power station was a significant project and would require an Environment Impact Statement (EIS).