After 12 years of development construction of the Pentland Bio-Energy plant will commence in September.
The fully integrated and energy self-sufficient plant situated about 90km south-west of Charters Towers and its accompanying sugar cane and sweet sorghum crops will produce its first ethanol by 2019 at the latest.
The plant is initially expected to produce 194 million litres of fuel grade ethanol between 2018-2019, which will be exported to a Fortune 100 company with an off-take agreement arranged for the next 15 years.
To get to the initial level of production 19,000 hectares of the 67,000 hectares of available land will be used.
Production will increase to 344 million litres by June 2020 annually at an average price of 80c per litre, which equates to $280m in export trade out of the region at least for the next 10 years.
The project will employ 500 people during construction, and a further 180-200 people when operations commence in late 2018.