A federal agency is helping manufacturing giant Manildra Group become less reliant on coal. 

Australia’s largest wheat processor and ethanol manufacturer has been offered an $85 million CEFC investment to exit coal at its primary manufacturing plant in regional NSW.

The CEFC investment, on behalf of the Australian Government, will transform how the Manildra Group facility in Nowra generates steam and electricity by eliminating coal from its energy mix and replacing it with a gas fired cogeneration plant.

It is hoped that the project will help kickstart the transition of the domestic industrial sector to a low carbon future, decarbonising operations while maintaining global competitiveness.

The installation of cogeneration technology should reduce emissions at the energy intensive Nowra plant by about 40 per cent, abating an estimated 332,000 tonnes of CO2-e annually. Manildra will no longer use coal to generate steam at the plant.

The successful financing of a new combined heat and power plant will enable the company to divest a dormant Lithgow coal mine.