Australia to build $10m seawater pipeline for algae industry

February 25, 2013
AlgaeIndustryMagazine.com

Australia's State Development Minister Colin Barnett

Australia’s State Development Minister Colin Barnett

Australia’s State Development Minister Colin Barnett has announced a $10 million government sponsored project for construction of a seawater pipeline to support the expansion of an algae industry at Karratha, in Western Australia. The pipeline would initially support Aurora Algae, a US-based algae technology and cultivation company currently investing $86 million towards a Stage 1 production facility at Karratha.

Aurora Algae’s pilot facility, close to Karratha airport, has already proved the technology to produce biodiesel, omega-3 oil, and protein-rich biomass for aquaculture and animal feed. As well as bringing jobs and economic diversification to the region, Aurora’s production facility is intended to create new exports for the region, contribute to reducing the CO2 emissions by the resource industry and support the local provision of diesel.

“This common user infrastructure will deliver benefits beyond encouraging the investment of Aurora Algae, with the seawater resource capable of supporting further investment by other industrial users,” said Mr. Barnett. “It has already been recognized that the Pilbara region is ideally suited for the development of an algae industry. Aurora’s proposed production facility is estimated to bring 170 jobs to the region.”

Regional Development Minister Brendon Grylls added that an expanded algae industry in the Pilbara region would play an important role to provide much-needed economic diversification in the region. “The Pilbara is ideally suited to the development of the algae industry due to the abundant sunshine and close proximity to sea water – the two key ingredients for the efficient production of algae – and the ready supply of carbon dioxide that is a by-product of the resources sector.”

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