Hydrogen Roadmap to drive low-carbon energy future

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The South Australian Government has released a Hydrogen Roadmap that aims to help drive the decarbonisation of Australia’s energy system, and accelerate investment in hydrogen infrastructure and technologies in the state.

The Roadmap outlines how South Australia’s world-leading renewable wind and solar assets can attract international investment in hydrogen production and accelerate South Australia’s transition to a zero carbon economy.

Developed in consultation with industry, the Roadmap will help drive local demand for hydrogen in the transport and energy sectors, target overseas export markets, and establish South Australia as a testbed for cutting-edge hydrogen technology.

In tandem with the release of the Roadmap the State Government:

  • Is calling for hydrogen infrastructure proposals under the $150 million Renewable Technology Fund. Proposal submissions close 23 October 2017.

 

  • Is calling for tenders to supply at least six hydrogen cell buses for the Adelaide Metro fleet along with supporting production and refuelling infrastructure. Expressions of interest close 9 October 2017. 

 

  • Released an interactive map to provide investors and project developers with a tool to identify sites that are suitable for hydrogen infrastructure within South Australia

Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy, Tom Koutsantonis, said hydrogen offers an opportunity to create a new industry in South Australia by exporting sun and wind resources to the world.

If we move now South Australia can lead the nation in the transition to a clean, safe and sustainable hydrogen economy,” Mr Koutsantonis said.

“By developing this technology in South Australia, motorists will have new choices in electric and hydrogen-powered vehicles as well as the infrastructure needed to support those options. Our Hydrogen Roadmap aims to have South Australia at the forefront of hydrogen development in this region within the next decade.

“Within two years, commuters in Adelaide will be able to ride on the first of a fleet of hydrogen-powered buses using locally-produced fuel.

“Within three years, South Australia will have the capacity to export its first hydrogen supplies produced using our renewable energy assets.

“Within a decade, South Australian motorists should be able to drive from Ceduna to Mt Gambier in a hydrogen-fuelled vehicle topping up at a statewide network of refuelling stations.”

Energy Networks Australia Interim CEO, Andrew Dillon, said the Roadmap will support efforts to capture the benefits of this carbon-free fuel.

“Hydrogen is one of the transformational technologies included in the Gas Vision 2050, which demonstrates how gas can continue to provide Australians with reliable and affordable energy into the future,” Mr Dillon said.

“A number of industry-led projects are already planned or underway following the release of the Vision earlier in 2017.”

Among the project already planned is Australia’s first ‘power-to-gas’ trail which was announced in August 2017. Australian Gas Networks will partner with AquaHydrex for the trial which will make use of excess renewable energy that can be stored in the gas network to be used when it’s needed.

Calculations by Deloitte Access Economics showed that Australia’s existing gas infrastructure can store more energy than six billion PowerWall batteries.

Mr Dillon said Energy Networks Australia is supporting a proposal for an industry-led Cooperative Research Centre focused on Future Fuels including hydrogen technologies.

“This research will support the South Australian Hydrogen Roadmap and will provide funding for South Australian researchers,” Mr Dillon said.

“Energy Networks Australia is now working to deliver a long-term research and development plan to support the Gas Vision 2050.”

The Gas Vision 2050 is a joint initiative of Australia’s peak gas industry bodies.

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