Investment management firm Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners has clinched a significant land acquisition in the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct of Townsville, Australia. The acquisition, made through a competitive tender process facilitated by the local council, is earmarked for the development of a state-of-the-art polysilicon manufacturing facility. This ambitious project will be powered by an adjacent large-scale solar and battery storage installation.
The land allocation comes with stringent project development timelines and a mandate to contribute to the critical infrastructure in the Lansdown area. Although precise details regarding the manufacturing facility's capacity and the solar-plus-storage project remain undisclosed, inquiries have been made to Quinbrook for further information.
The key aim of this endeavor is to bolster Australia's solar manufacturing capabilities and align with the renewable energy and critical minerals strategies of both the Queensland and Australian governments. Queensland, in particular, has set ambitious renewable energy targets, including the deployment of 22GW of new solar and wind projects by 2035 and the establishment of 12 renewable energy zones.
The choice of Townsville for this venture is well-informed, with the region boasting abundant solar energy resources and access to critical minerals. Quinbrook emphasizes that this comprehensive development, a venture it terms a “multi-billion-dollar” project, will source high-quality silica quartz from the North Queensland region.
Furthermore, Quinbrook has joined forces with metallurgical silicon manufacturer Solquartz to seamlessly integrate the latter's project into Quinbrook's extensive polysilicon manufacturing facility. According to Brian Restall, Senior Director at Quinbrook, this venture is backed by strong relationships with leading global solar and battery manufacturers. Components produced in Townsville will be exported to these prominent manufacturers, where they will be used in the production of finished solar modules and batteries.
The Deputy Premier of Queensland, Steven Miles, has previously designated the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct as a project of state significance earlier this year, further underscoring the significance of this venture. Beyond its endeavors in Australia, Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners operates a portfolio of projects in the United States. Notably, the company, in collaboration with its subsidiary Primergy Solar, has successfully closed a substantial $1.9 billion financing deal for a 690MWac/380MW hybrid solar-plus-storage project in the United States.