05 May 2021
The Australian government has backed a project worth over $100 million which will see the construction of three new green hydrogen plants.
"This is about blending hydrogen into our gas network, so the purpose of this is to actually bring the carbon emissions of our gas network down," Energy Minister Angus Taylor said. Engie Renewables were rewarded $42.5 million by the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), which will fund a 10-megawatt (MW) electrolyser project. Yara Pilbara Fertiliser's existing ammonia facility in Karratha in Western Australia will benefit from this project.
In addition, ATCO received around $28.7 million for a 10 MW electrolyser for gas blending at its Clean Energy Innovation Park. Similarly, $32.1 million will be granted to Australian Gas Networks Limited (AGIG) for a 10 MW electrolyser for gas blending at AGIG's Murray Valley Hydrogen Park in Wodonga, Victoria.
"The key here is for us to build the infrastructure and to get the R & D [Research and Development] done so we can get the costs down, we can provide the supporting infrastructure and then the private sector can invest on the back of that,” Taylor added on.
Green hydrogen will be produced from the electrolysers and will eventually be blended with non-renewable liquefied natural gas. Over 210 jobs during construction are expected to be created, the government said.
Australia would be put on the global hydrogen map, Australian Hydrogen Council chief executive Fiona Simon said, continuing, "This investment should be matched with good policy to encourage demand and improve the economics of producing hydrogen, which will ultimately increase supply of hydrogen."