Everyone benefits from coal royalties

Queenslanders own the state’s mineral resources, including coal. Coal royalties are the money paid by mining companies to the people of Queensland in exchange for the right to mine their coal. This ensures Queenslanders are compensated fairly from the earnings mining companies make from this finite natural resource.

Who benefits?

Queenslanders. Coal royalties go toward supporting communities who need it most, including those regional mining communities where the coal was mined.

How do they benefit?

Royalties help fund critical infrastructure, create jobs, and deliver essential services. They help pay for everything from large scale renewable energy projects to new hospitals to upgrades to local sporting facilities.  

Here are a few of the many ways coal royalties are helping Queensland’s people, economy, and environment.

Health facilities and services

Better and easier access to medical care for regional Queenslanders

Regional hospitals $3.619 billion

Coal royalties will help build, upgrade or expand hospitals across regional Queensland, increasing treatment spaces and improving patient services. It will also fund new and improved medical equipment and facilities. Projects include:

  • $48.5 million for the new Moranbah Hospital
  • $250 million for the Cairns Hospital expansion
  • $250 million for the Mackay Base Hospital expansion
  • $530 million for the Townsville University Hospital expansion          
  • $1.3 billion for the new Toowoomba Hospital          
  • $1.2 billion for the new Bundaberg Hospital
  • $40 million to upgrade the Hervey Bay Hospital

LifeFlight $586.1 million

Coal royalties will help support Lifeflight with a new 10-year commercial agreement to continue to provide vital aeromedical services, search and rescue and response to primary emergencies.

Royal Flying Doctor Service $333.7 million

Coal royalties will help support the Royal Flying Doctor Service to safeguard the links between regional Queenslanders and medical treatment through a new 10-year agreement.

Access to specialist services $70.3 million

Coal royalties will fund an increase to the Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme (PTSS) which supports Queenslanders in rural and regional areas to access specialist medical services not available locally.

Inland energy, water security, and improved port infrastructure

Cleaner, cheaper, more reliable energy and water and better ports

CopperString 2032 $1.06 billion

$1.06 billion in coal royalties will help pay for the $5 billion CopperString 2032 project, a 1,100km power transmission line from Townsville to Mount Isa, connecting Queensland’s North West to the national electricity grid. It will deliver reliable, affordable, and renewable power to the people, businesses and communities in the region.

Pumped Hydro

Coal royalties will help pay for up to 7 gigawatts of large-scale, long-duration pumped hydro across 2 regional sites.

$6 billion in coal royalties will help fund the Borumba Pumped Hydro project, located west of Gympie on Borumba Dam, which will provide enough clean, green energy to power up to 2 million homes with 2 gigawatts of 24-hour storage.

$1 billion from coal royalties will help support the Pioneer-Burdekin Pumped Hydro project, located west of Mackay, forecast to be the largest pumped hydro energy storage in the world.

Central Queensland wind and solar $800 million

Coal royalties will help support a 2.3-gigawatt portfolio of wind and solar projects by CleanCo in Central Queensland and help CS Energy pursue investments in new wind projects that support future industrial decarbonisation of the region.

Fitzroy to Gladstone pipeline $550 million

Coal royalties will help pay for vital water projects including the Fitzroy to Gladstone pipeline which will provide long-term water security to the Gladstone area and support current and emerging industries.

Burdekin Falls Dam $440 million

Coal royalties will help fund Sunwater’s Burdekin Falls Dam Improvement and Raising project to improve and raise the dam by 2 metres to further support water security in the region.

Port of Gladstone Northern Land Expansion $100 million

Coal royalties will help pay for the release of additional land at Gladstone Port assisting the development of renewable energy and other industries.

Bowen Wharf $50 million

Coal royalties will help pay for the replacement of the Bowen wharf to support continued community access with the plans, designs, and approvals subject to further consultation with stakeholders.

Local sporting clubs and grounds

Supporting, maintaining and growing local community spirit

Browne Park $29 million boost

Coal royalties will boost funding to help redevelop the home of rugby league, Browne Park, in Rockhampton. It will fund a new 3,500-seat grandstand, change rooms, food and beverage outlets, and media and coach facilities to create central Queensland’s leading sports and entertainment venue.  

To find out more about where coal royalties are being invested, take a look at Budget Measures, Chapter 2.

Last Updated: 19 June 2023