RAPAD mission to focus on delivering energy benefits for region

RAPAD will lead its first international delegation to the United States from 4 to 21 May.

The mission investigations will provide valuable insights and networks for the RAPAD Power Grid and other regional renewable energy projects into the future – arguably we’ll have some of the best knowledge in the nation of energy transition for rural and remote economies right here in the central west.

RAPAD Chair and Longreach Mayor, Tony Rayner will lead the mission with RAPAD representatives including Barcoo Shire Mayor, Sally O’Neil; Blackall-Tambo Regional Council Councillor, Boyd Johnstone; and RAPAD Acting CEO, Morgan Gronold.

Other delegates joining the group include Queensland Director-General for the Department of Energy and Climate, Paul Martyn, VisIR founder, Joseph O’Brien and Managing Director AJ Lucas Services, David Lukas.

Mayor Rayner said: “This is a significant milestone for RAPAD and Central West Queensland, as we look to lead development of projects in our region with understanding from experience and ensuring that we are working across the board with industry, landholders, and community.”

“Earlier in the year we took the opportunity to learn locally with a visit to Hughenden renewable energy projects that are getting off the ground. The US mission program will take us to the next level to see longer-term projects, impacts and returns for the communities and international best practice.”

“The delegation will visit several geographically similar areas and communities in Texas and Nevada, as well as meet with leading industry in a variety of energy generation technology, storage, and transmission.”

Mayor Rayner said there had already been of a lot of work and research, in addition to support from the Queensland Government, to reach this milestone.

“What essentially started in 2017 when RAPAD-commissioned research identified renewable energy as one of the key areas of potential economic growth for CWQ, has grown to see us host a regional energy forum, work alongside the likes of Ross Garnaut AC, grow our networks with universities, industry and other similar communities, and most recently see projects like the Barcaldine Renewable Energy Zone and the RAPAD Power Grid take shape,” Mayor Rayner said.

“Of key importance to these projects’ success is to ensure we understand how our region and its communities can best benefit from their delivery.”

“Through this mission our local leaders and networks will gain a first-hand understanding and quantify the potential impact and economic benefits a diversified economy and transition to net zero could bring to the RAPAD region,” he said.

“This will also provide an opportunity for us to showcase local products into international markets.”

“We look forward to exploring these projects, growing our networks and being able to share and apply what we have learnt in our region and with colleagues across Queensland,” Mayor Rayner said.

Contact: Mayor Tony Rayner, 0418 961 372 | Morgan Gronold, A/CEO RAPAD, 0448 739 759
Download the Mission Booklet