Stanwell power station

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Stanwell power station is a 1,460-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in Queensland, Australia.


The map below shows the location of the plant, near Rockhampton, Queensland.

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Background on Plant

The Stanwell power station is a 1,460 megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station which is owned and operated by the government-owned generator, Stanwell Corporation. The power station, which comprises four 365 MW generating units, is located 22 kilometres west of Rockhampton in Central Queensland. The first generating unit was commissioned in 1993 with the station becoming fully operational in 1996.[1]

Water supply for the power station is drawn from the Fitzroy River.[1] The company states that the power station burns approximately 4 million tonnes a year of "low sulphur black coal sourced from various Central Queensland mines".[2]

In April of 2019, the National Pollutant Inventory by Environmental Justice Australia, revealed that nitrous oxides from the plant doubled in 2017-18 to 36,000 tonnes from 18,000 a year earlier. The change comes with the installation of continuous monitoring at the Stanwell power station, rather than relying on the operators' estimates.[3]

According to the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) the plant is scheduled to retire in 2044-2045.[4]

Financing for coal supply

In May 2020 Australian bank Westpac announced that it would not longer fund thermal coal projects beyond 2030. In 2018 Westpac loaned $720 million lending facility to Coronado Global Resources, which provides coal for Stanwell.[5]

IGCC with CCS plant

Stanwell Corp had proposed constructing a 500 MW IGCC plant with carbon capture and storage at the plant site, known as ZeroGen. The commercial–scale deployment study was funded by the Queensland and Australian Governments and the Australian Coal Association, under a coalition known as ZeroGen Pty Ltd. The project was initiated in 2008 and cancelled in 2010. Zerogen cited the following reasons for the cancellation:[6]

  • inability of the Northern Denison Trough storage resource to accommodate the sustained injection rates or volumes of CO2 required by the project;
  • uncertainty as to the timely award of sufficient tenure and funding necessary to successfully appraise an alternative CO2 storage resource;
  • very high capital and operating costs which could not be supported by anticipated revenue streams;
  • technical risks around the CO2 capture technology and project integration; and
  • lack of credible project funding opportunities to achieve financial close.

Plant Details

  • Sponsor: Stanwell Corp Ltd
  • Parent company: Stanwell
  • Location: Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia
  • Coordinates: -23.5091135, 150.3178014 (exact)
  • Status: Operating
  • Gross capacity: 1,460 MW (Units 1-4: 365 MW)
  • Type: Subcritical
  • In service: 1993-96
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source:
  • Source of financing:

Articles and resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 Stanwell Corporation, "Stanwell Power Station", accessed June 2010.
  2. Stanwell Corporation, "Stanwell Power Station", Stanwell Corporation website, April 2009.
  3. Peter Hannam, "Coal-fired power, coal mines continue to head toxic pollutants list", The Sydney Morning Herald, April 1, 2019.
  4. Mark Ludlow, 'Premature' closure of Qld coal plant 'dire': Taylor, Financial Review, Oct. 7, 2019
  5. Derek Rose, Westpac to end support for coal by 2030,, May 4, 2020
  6. "Zerogen: IGCC with CCS: A case history," Zerogen, 2012

Related articles

External resources