31 July 2015

THE first of the State Government’s biofuels subcommittee meetings will be held in Mackay.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk made the announcement after touring Wilmar’s BioEthanol plant, during her first ministerial visit to Mackay yesterday.

“What I’ve seen today I’m incredibly impressed with,” she said.

“So impressed that the first meeting of my cabinet biofuels subcommittee will be held in the Mackay region.” While there was no set date for the meeting, it would be held within months.

The Queensland government was set to put forward a biofuels mandate from July 1 next year, which would be set at 2% of total volume of regular unleaded petrol and E10 fuel sold in Queensland.

This vision to expand the biofuels industry has already generated interest from the US Navy.

After meeting with navy officials earlier this year Ms Palasczcuk named Mackay and Gladstone as ideal locations for a biofuels production plant to refuel the “Great Green Fleet”.

“I’ve met with very senior officials from the US navy, they are very interested in what Queensland has to offer,” she said.

While there have been murmurings the target set in the biofuels mandate was too low, Ms Palasczcuk said her government was always open to consultation.

“We are out there speaking about a 2% ethanol mandate but what we’ve seen in New South Wales is that it is increased over time,” she said. “But what we want to do is kick start this industry. We want to see the jobs grow and government is absolutely committed to doing that.”

Extracted in full from the Daily Mercury.