Newcastle has been identified as a possible hydrogen hub location.
The Federal Government is poised to announce a further $150 million in funding for two locations under the Clean Hydrogen Industrial Hubs program which will enable the rollout of hydrogen hubs across seven priority regional sites.
The hydrogen investment in Australia is $1.2 billion for what the government is calling the “clean fuel of the future” with Australia planning to commercialise the technology by colocating hydrogen production and industrial uses, and building on the infrastructure and workforces of regional areas.
The hydrogen hubs planned for many areas across the country will consolidate Australia’s natural resource strengths to unlock cheap, clean energy and stimulate a potential surge in industrial activity.
There’s a now $464 million grant program that provides up to $3 million grants for project consortia to initially progress feasibility and design work, and up to $70 million towards the roll-out of projects.
Seven prospective locations across Australia have been identified and include: Bell Bay (TAS), Darwin (NT), Eyre Peninsula (SA), Gladstone (QLD), Latrobe Valley (VIC), Hunter Valley (NSW), and Pilbara (WA).
Hydrogen hubs, as identified by the National Hydrogen Strategy as a priority measure, will create economies of scale by co-locating hydrogen producers, users and exporters in one location.
While the hydrogen program is open Australia-wide, the seven locations have been identified based on strong interest and activity from industry and each location’s existing capabilities,
infrastructure and resources.
Prime Minster Scott Morrison said these hydrogen hubs would create jobs across Australia and fast-track Australia’s push to be a global leader in the new energy economy.
“Our plan to invest and develop low emissions industries will mean more jobs for Australian workers, particularly in our regions, cheaper energy for businesses and lower emissions,” the
Prime Minister said.
“We are accelerating the development of our Australian hydrogen industry and it is our ambition to produce the cheapest clean hydrogen in the world, transforming our transport, energy, resources and manufacturing sectors.”
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said Clean Hydrogen Industrial Hubs will create the domestic demand needed to help the hydrogen industry drive down costs and scale-up production creating new job opportunities for our regions.
“Hydrogen hubs are crucial to realising the Morrison Government’s vision of making Australia a major global player in hydrogen production and exports by 2030,” Minister Taylor said.
“Australia has the potential to be a world leader in the production of affordable and clean hydrogen, and our hydrogen industry could create around 8,000 new Australian jobs and generate over $11 billion a year in GDP by 2050.”
“The development of Clean Hydrogen Industrial Hubs would help the emerging industry work towards achieving the stretch goal of hydrogen production at under $2 a kilogram under the government’s Technology Investment Roadmap.”
“Accelerating the commercial deployment of priority low emissions technologies such as hydrogen so they reach cost parity with higher emissions alternatives is critical to Australia’s technology led approach to reducing emissions.”
Program guidelines are now available at business.gov.au, with applications to open in the coming weeks.
Image credit: Angus Taylor MP Facebook Page (September 2020).