Business

Solar and gas a threat to Gladstone's power station

GLADSTONE's power station has a fight on its hands to stay relevant and competitive.

With demand for electricity dropping, an increase in the uptake of solar and new options for gas, the "sluggish, coal driven power station" has major challenges to ensure employees can keep their jobs.

In the past two years the power station has decreased its staff through natural attrition - with "organisational changes" meaning numbers could drop to as low as 245 people on site. That is 100 people less than in 2013.

According to general manager John Abbott, the power station does have options to run for another 30 years.

But to do that, his company needs to remain competitive in the marketplace.

He said over the past five years the demand for electricity had fallen "far short" of what predictions had been.

"The current demand in the market is very unpredictable and some of the things we've seen this year certainly don't match anything we were expecting last year," he said.

Mr Abbott said the new State Government manifesto showed it was looking for another 2000-3000 megawatts of solar power into the grid over the next five years.

"When they're generating rooftop solar it doesn't cost the individuals money, so it affects demand," he said.

"But it goes on and off when the sun comes up and down, and that's hard for a coal-fired power station to manage."

"Whatever prediction we make (about the market and power prices) will be wrong, which makes planning difficult for us."

Mr Abbott was talking about the company's position in the Gladstone supply chain to the Gladstone Engineering Alliance Panel of Procurement last week.

It was a bleak message for those wanting to tender.

"We have a challenge to minimise our cost base because no matter what the market faces us, the lower our cost base the better we're able to play in that market," Mr Abbott said.

"We look for competition in the national market for our supplies."

He said while buying local did provide advantages to his company, there were also considerable cost savings to be made looking out of town.

"If I use 20 as the lowest base cost quoted locally I was able to get that work done for 5 including materials out of Brisbane," he said.

"That is the challenge you, as local players, have for our business."

Topics:  electricity prices gladstone power station solar power



McDonald's shooting: Police actions deemed 'lawful'

CLEARED: Cops who fired shots at a former Gladstone man Zachariah Hewitt deemed lawful.

Police cleared after firing shots at former Gladstone man

UPDATE: Contractor taken to hospital after falling at QAL

Paramedics respond to reports of a man falling 10m at QAL

Man possibly injured after falling 10m

Council's choice in revealing reason behind shock departure of CEO

Gladstone council meeting January 17, 2017.

THE COMMUNITY "doesn't really have a say” in who the council CEO is

Local Partners

The best of SUNfest on show

SUNfest 2017 wraps up on Friday night with showcase event.


New Year New Yard

Win $1000 Bunnings Voucher
Learn More

Puppetry of the Penis secrets revealed ahead of show

The famed Puppetry of the Penis is coming to the Sunshine Coast for shows in Noosa and Caloundra.

WARNING: This interview contains adult themes and traces of nuts

Noll meltdown won't affect Gympie Oz Day concert

Shannon Noll

Photo Contributed

Shannon Noll is still expected to perform in Gympie next Thursday

11 huge events coming to Gladstone in the next 6 months

Events coming up in Gladstone in 2017.

Your guide to exciting events coming to the Gladstone region

Jimmy Barnes Gladstone show not a sell out

Jimmy Barnes will be performing in Gladstone on Saturday at the Harvey Road Tavern.

PLENTY of tickets still available

Your chance to drive like Magnum P.I.

Tom Selleck in Magnum P.I. with his trusty 'side-kick' Ferrari.

FERRARI that appeared on classic detective show goes to auction.

Ocean Sleeper discuss being 'Six Feet Down'.

Ocean Sleeper make waves with their new EP. Photo Contributed

Gippsland band shines at Unify

Bowie's final music EP No Plan released

NEW: Artwork for David Bowie's posthumous 2016 EP, No Plan.

David Bowie's 28th and final album

Crow Street Creative on right track

Crow St Creative host barbecue and bands.

"Blank canvas”: industrial Crow Street developments

Married At First Sight: Ipswich bachelor seeks love

READY FOR IT: Ipswich man Simon McQuillan will appear on the upcoming new season of Married At First Sight.

Romance would top off recovery for Booval man

Collapsed Coast company could owe up to $5 million

Staff, ATO, landlords among those out of pocket.

Ipswich block of dirt sells for $582 a square metre

JUST SOLD: A property on the Brookwater golf course sold for a record-breaking $612,000.

Property smashed 2007 record by close to $100,000

Sunday auction for historical home

Former Catholic school sure to attract spirited bidding

Looking back, looking ahead in Noosa

NEVER-ENDING GLORY: Looking towards Laguna Bay and Hastings St from Noosa National Park.

Natural appeal of Noosa continues to attract buyers

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!