$1.75m announced for SUPL

Published on 20 November 2015

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Minister for Regional Development Jaala Pulford today confirmed $1.75m funding for the Stawell Underground Physics Laboratory (SUPL), an election commitment made by the Andrews Government.

Speaking in Stawell this afternoon, Minister Pulford said the development of SUPL would not only boost the region’s international reputation, but also increase and diversify employment opportunities in Stawell.

Mayor Cr Murray Emerson said the State Government funding would provide the project with a much needed boost.

“SUPL is arguably the most exciting project Council has the privilege of leading at the moment so we’re very pleased to see the State Government committing extra support to it today,” Cr Emerson said.

“It brings our total funding for the project to $3.5m. We couldn’t be happier to see this unique and innovative project making such an impact.

“We’re well on track to have the lab completed in early 2017, creating the Southern Hemisphere’s first underground physics laboratory right here in Stawell,” he said.

A collaboration between Council, Melbourne University, the ARC Centre of Excellence for Particle Physics at the Terascale (CoEPP), the Italian National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN), and Newmarket Gold, the project will see scientists searching for dark matter - the ‘holy grail’ of science.

Cr Emerson said the benefits of the project would be many and varied.

“As well as the obvious scientific opportunities, it will also provide jobs, educational and tourism opportunities that will benefit the shire and region,” he said.    

Council was recognised for its forward thinking with the SUPL project, winning the 2015 National Award for Local Government in the ‘Contributing to Regional Growth’ category.