Muja power station

From Global Energy Monitor

Muja power station is a 854-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Western Australia, Australia.


The map below shows the location of the plant, near Collie, Western Australia.

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Background on Plant

Muja power station is a 1,094-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station owned and operated by Verve Energy, which was merged into Synergy in 2014, an electricity corporation owned by the Western Australian government. The Muja power station, which was opened in 1966, comprises four 60 MW units in Stages A-B, two 200MW generating units in Stage C and two 227MW units in Stage D.[1]

A & B units refurbished, then quickly retired

On its website Verve Energy states that "the four smallest and least efficient units, Stages A and B, were closed in April 2007. These units could be refurbished and recommissioned by 2012 as an interim measure during the transition to clean technologies." The four units are 60 MW each.[1][2]

In 2009 the Barnett government controversially decided to refurbish the ageing facility by December 2011, to bolster South West energy supplies, saying the private sector would pay for the refurbishment. The project was reportedly plagued by problems from the outset, with technical and engineering difficulties leading to multiple cost and time blowouts.[3]

On 25 June 2013, after spending A$308m on the planned recommissioning of units A & B, Premier Colin Barnett announced work had been postponed indefinitely: "units three and four continue to operate, units 1 and 2 are basically mothballed".[4] Critics say the government should face a public inquiry over its decision to revive the plant, as the private investor had pulled out amid ballooning project costs, leaving taxpayers footing the bill.[5]

As of 2014 two units of Muja A and B were used intermittently.[6] The units were plagued by operational and reliability problems, generating electricity just 20 per cent of the time.[3]

In May 2017 Labor energy minister Ben Wyatt said plants A and B would be retired permanently.[7] Synergy plans to retire two units at Muja AB on 30 September 2017, and the remaining two units will likely be retired in April 2018.[8]

In September 2017 Wyatt announced that all units at Muja AB would be closed by the end of the month due to safety concerns and the high cost of repairs needed to keep the plant operational. “$300 million of taxpayers' money was wasted on this project due to their disastrous management,” Wyatt said. “Muja AB will be remembered as the embodiment of the previous government’s lack of respect for the taxpayers of WA."[9] In March 2018, Synergy confirmed it had made an additional US$20.3 million provision for decommissioning the coal-fired generator.[3]

Proposed retirement for Muja-C and Muja-D

As of December 2018, the plant was expected to close in 2023.[10]

In August 2019 the Australian government announced that Muja-C would be retired by Oct. 1, 2022 and Muja-D would be retired by Oct. 1, 2024.[11] Keeping these units open longer would cost taxpayers an estimated $350 million.[11]

Coal source

Coal for the power station is sourced from the Muja mine operated by Griffin Coal.[12]

Plant Details

  • Sponsor: Synergy
  • Parent company: Synergy
  • Location: Collie, Western Australia, Australia
  • Coordinates: -33.445875, 116.3075275 (exact)
  • Status: Muja-A & Muja-B Retired in 2017; Muja-C & Muja-D Operating
  • Gross capacity: 1,094 MW
    • Muja-A, Units 1 & 2: 60 MW
    • Muja-B, Units 1 & 2: 60 MW
    • Muja-C Units 1 & 2: 200 MW
    • Muja-D Units 1 & 2: 227 MW
  • Type: Subcritical
  • In service: Muja-A: 1966; Muja-B: 1968-9; Muja-C: 1980-81; Muja-D: 1984-85
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source: Muja mine
  • Source of financing:

Articles and resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 Verve Energy, "Muja", Verve Energy website, accessed November 2010.
  2. Verve Energy, "Generating Capacity", Verve Energy website, accessed November 2010.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Daniel Mercer, "Muja AB closure to cost $20m," The West Australian, 26 March 2018
  4. "Government suspends work on Muja power station". ABC. ABC. 25 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
  5. "Call for inquiry into Muja Power Station Fiasco". ABC. ABC. 25 June 2013. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
  6. "Coal rules again at power," The West Australian, Aug 3, 2014
  7. Sophie Vorrath, "WA to close Muja coal units, in first signs of major shift to renewables," Renew Economy, 5 May 2017
  8. "Muja AB set to close four units," Collie Mail, 5 May 2017
  9. Collie’s Muja AB power station to close in multi-million dollar loss, The West Australian, 13 Sep 2017.
  10. Matt MckenzieSigns Point to Coal Closures Business News, December 2018
  11. 11.0 11.1 Muja Power Station in Collie to be scaled back from 2022, Government of Western Australia, Aug. 5, 2019
  12. Griffn Coal, "Muja Mine", Griffin Coal website, accessed November 2010.

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