Metgasco drilling site near Casino.
Metgasco drilling site near Casino. Jacklyn Wagner

Valley council's power play

THE Richmond Valley Council will take a leading role in exploring how the valley can capitalise on the Richmond Valley Power Station to be built by Metgasco.

This week the State Government approved the development application for the 30-megawatt gas-fired powerstation which will cost $50million to build.

Council manager Brian Wilkinson said the council would take on the role as facilitator to forge opportunities for the development of the methane gas industry in the region.

“We would like to make gas reticulation available to attract industry,” Mr Wilkinson said.

The council is currently seeking State Government funding to employ a project officer to work with the council and industry to develop the economic potential of Casino’s methane gas resources.

Chairman of the Casino Chamber of Commerce, Michael Greentree, said the powerstation could only be good for the town.

It is expected the power plant will attract industry interested in using clean energy.

“It will bring more people and that will bring more trade,” Mr Greentree said.

It would also have other positive effects, such as bringing skilled people into the town.

There would also be a boost for housing and more enrolments in schools, he said.

NSW Planning Minister Tony Kelly said the project would help meet the energy demands of the region’s growing population.

Mayor Col Sullivan said the approval was welcomed.

“This is a positive step to start using the gas that has been found,” Cr Sullivan said.



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