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Bechtel on board for Queensland’s Big-T hydro scheme

Artist's impression of Lake Cressbrook hydro plant

Artist’s impression of Lake Cressbrook hydro plant

The project, called Big-T, is intended as an extension to the national power grid by both producing and storing electricity. The client is BE Power and GE Renewable Energy, a division of General Electric.

BigT will consist of a pumped hydro energy storage facility (400MW/10 hours) and a battery energy storage facility (200MW/1 hour) at Lake Cressbrook. It will generate enough power to supply 288,000 homes with renewable energy.

Once operational, Big-T is expected to deliver significant savings in electricity costs and improve the reliability of supply to consumers.

The plant will support the transition of Australia’s baseload of electricity away from its aging coal generation power plants and it will contribute to the Queensland government’s target of 50% renewable energy generation by 2030. 

Bechtel will provide support to the project development under a service agreement that will include advancing the design, facilitating early contractor cost savings and buildability and advising how to best structure core contracts. It will also initiate supply chain engagement with a view to maximising local content and indigenous participation.

“We are pleased to secure the services of Bechtel,” said Scott Walkem, BE Power’s managing director. “Bechtel has significant expertise in the delivery of power infrastructure including hydropower. Further, Bechtel and GE have a long history of working collaboratively to deliver energy projects.”

Bechtel’s initial contribution will help inform Big-T’s feasibility study, with the final investment decision scheduled for late 2023. If achieved, Bechtel will then go on to engineer, procure and build the project. 

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