It looks like cannabis could play an even greater role in the future of coal town Collie in Western Australia.
Located approximately 200 kilometres south of WA’s capital city Perth, Collie has a long history of coal mining. With coal’s days numbered, the town has been looking to other industries to survive; and cannabis could help it do so. But not only to just survive – to thrive.
In February last year, WA’s McGowan Government earmarked $2 million for a medicinal cannabis operation in Collie that it says will create long-term local jobs – Cannaponics Limited’s cannabis research, cultivation, extraction and manufacturing facility.
One of the interesting aspects of the facility is Cannaponics is aiming to operate it on 100% renewable energy, using an advanced micro-grid with solar power and hydrogen-electric power. This electricity would be supplied by CannaEnergy, wholly owned by Cannaponics Ltd.
Currently under construction, the 2,000 square metre manufacturing facility and 3,600sqm greenhouse will produce medicines to be made available for distribution in Australia and exported internationally. But Cannoponics’ interests go beyond medicinal cannabis. It also has an arm dealing with hemp-based food, supplements, and nutraceuticals.
Last week, Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan welcomed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Cannaponics and Avacare Health Australia. This agreement isn’t medical cannabis related. Well, it is in a way.
The MoU covers research and development intended to be carried out on using hemp as a replacement for petroleum-based plastics and textiles required to manufacture Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and various medical devices.
According to Cannaponics, Avacare will operate, construct, and fund a manufacturing facility adjacent to Cannaponics’ medicinal cannabis facility site. Cannaponics will provide the land, power, water, and security.
“Team Cannaponics is very fortunate to have the support from key stake holders such as Avacare and really look forward to delivering this project,” stated the company.
Commenting on the MoU, Minister MacTiernan said:
“We’re investing in Collie’s future by delivering on our commitment to diversify the economy – and in the case of Cannaponics, also supporting an initiative that supports local manufacturing in a growth industry.”