Pioneer-Burdekin Pumped Hydro Project

The Pioneer Valley and adjacent ranges in the Burdekin catchment have been identified as a preferred second site for a long-duration pumped hydro energy storage (PHES) facility.


About the project

In June 2022, the Queensland Government announced $35 million of funding, to identify a second PHES site, in addition to the Borumba project announced in June 2021.

After careful analysis, experts identified the Pioneer Valley and adjacent ranges, located approximately 75km west of Mackay, as an area with significant potential for a long-duration PHES facility.

This was due to its favourable topography and proximity to high-quality wind and solar generation sources in the Central and Northern Queensland Renewable Energy Zones, which could unlock large volumes of renewable energy.

Further studies are now required to better understand the impacts and benefits of pumped hydro energy storage at the Pioneer-Burdekin site.

Over the next 12 months, Queensland Hydro will carry out detailed technical investigations to refine knowledge of the pumped hydro potential between the proposed upper reservoirs in the Burdekin catchment, and the lower reservoir proposed in the Pioneer Valley near Netherdale.

Studies will also include geotechnical investigations, environmental, social and cultural heritage assessments. Find out what current works are taking place in your community.

Click here to view our Pioneer-Burdekin artist impressions

Hydro Studies Summary available

The Department of Energy and Climate has released the Hydro Studies Summary report, summarising the government’s investigations into energy storage through their Queensland Hydro Study.

The report explains why pumped hydro is needed in Queensland’s future energy system and outlines the investigations and studies that led to the Pioneer Valley being selected as a potential site for pumped hydro.

It’s important to note that the proposed Pioneer-Burdekin Project is still undergoing initial investigations.

The government report is available on the Department of Energy and Climate website. Click here to access it.

Questions about the report should be directed to the Department via [email protected]


You’re part of our process

Stakeholder engagement is a key priority for us to ensure we deliver the best outcomes for both Queensland as a whole and the local communities.

Our goal is to involve, collaborate, and empower stakeholders and stakeholders groups across all aspects of the Pioneer-Budekin Pumped Hydro Project.  We believe in creating connections, and working in a respectful, responsive, transparent and genuine manner.

work with us

Business opportunities

Our projects will require the expertise of a wide range of suppliers and contractors.

Expressions of interest (EOI), tenders and other opportunities to the market will be released via the QTender portal.

questions & answers

Project FAQs

Environmental Approvals



Project resources

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Environmental management plans
Project Team Pioneer-Burdekin Pumped Hydro