The Governments of Papua New Guinea and Queensland, Australia, along with PNG Energy Developments (PNG EDL) and Origin Energy, are to support the development of a hydro electricity project.

Under the MoU, PNG EDL, a joint venture between Origin and PNG Sustainable Development Program, is assessing the hydroelectric potential of the Purari Hydro Resource at Wabo in the Gulf Province of Papua New Guinea.

The project utilising the power of the existing river flows, will be able to generate about 1,800MW of renewable baseload electricity.

The proposed project will provide power for remote villages and rural communities in the country and also export power via Weipa to join the national electricity grid at Townsville, Queensland.

“Under this partnership Queensland looks to become that baseload customer,” Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said.

Origin managing director Grant King said this will be the first project to deliver year-round baseload renewable energy into mainland Australia.

A comprehensive feasibility study of environmental, sociological and engineering aspects will be completed in 2012.