The Queensland government has agreed to sink $132m into Genex Power’s (ASX:GNX) North Queensland hydro power project.

The project will employ up to 500 people in its first two years and will have a capacity of 250 million watts.

The package comes as part of the government’s plan to to build a renewable energy hub in Northern Queensland.

The cash will be used to build the 186km single circuit transmission line from Kidston to Mount Fox. The line will be built, owned and operated by state-owned transmission network service provider Powerlink Queensland.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the investment unlocked access to more energy generation for North Queensland.

“This infrastructure will support the development of a clean energy hub in the North, providing jobs, investment and energy security,” she said.

The project will be the world’s first hydro power project to utilise an abandoned gold mine and is integrated with a nearby solar project.

Construction will start by Christmas and will boost the ghost town of Kidston. The former gold mining town has only four permanent residents now but will host all on-site employees.

Genex shares jumped 9 per cent at the market open this morning.

In other ASX small cap energy news:

Carnarvon Petroleum (ASX:CVN) jumped 7 per cent this morning after announcing it has confirmed a hydrocarbon bearing reservoir in the intervals of its Dorado-3 well. The company said the results support progressing to flow tests – the last variable needed to progress to development planning activities. “Dorado has proven to be a large world class resource, located in an ideal jurisdiction and operated by a quality partner,” managing director Adrian Cook said.

Texas-focused Helios Energy (ASX:HE8) reported that 6,097 barrels of fluid had flowed in the last seven days at its Presidio 141#2 well. This equated to 820 barrels of oil at a rate of 117 barrels per day. It is also producing 621,000 cubic feet of gas per day – the equivalent of 103 barrels of oil per day. The company told shareholders it is currently preparing to transition the well to production. Physical preparations will begin once the majority of completion fluid has been recovered.