Central Queensland: a future hydrogen export powerhouse

27 November 2020

Queensland has taken another step towards becoming a green hydrogen production and export powerhouse, with the formation of a consortium between Queensland-owned Stanwell Corporation and Japanese energy company Iwatani Corporation, Japan’s largest hydrogen supplier.

Stanwell CEO Richard Van Breda said the consortium will see planning progressed on a new renewable hydrogen export facility in Gladstone and the building of commercial and government partnerships to enable the project to move towards a bankable feasibility study and front end engineering design.

“There is strong, growing interest in green hydrogen to decarbonise a range of sectors including power generation, transport and industrial processes,” Mr Van Breda said.

“Demand for imported green hydrogen is particularly strong in Japan, where government policies and action by major companies is driving hydrogen uptake.

“Stanwell welcomes the opportunity to continue working with Iwatani on the development of a large-scale hydrogen industry in Central Queensland, with the view of exporting hydrogen to Japan”, he said.

Japan has committed to reducing its net emissions of greenhouse gases to zero by 2050. It plans to achieve this by becoming a ‘hydrogen society’.

Iwatani is a gas and energy development and supply company in Japan. The company has 10 compressed hydrogen plants and 3 liquefied hydrogen plants located throughout Japan and supplies 70 per cent share of Japan’s hydrogen market.

This project could ultimately underpin the future of hydrogen supply to Japan and support the decarbonisation of Japan’s electricity system.

Mr Van Breda said Stanwell and Iwatani had recently completed a concept study that looked at the potential for developing a large-scale green hydrogen industry in Central Queensland. The study identified that the region has the natural competitive advantages to be a world leader in exporting hydrogen.

“The region has high quality renewable energy resources, available land and water, port infrastructure, and is in close proximity to key export markets.

“While our concept study showed there is still a way to go for hydrogen to be commercial, collaborating with key partners such as Iwatani will help to drive down the cost of hydrogen technologies, and support the development of the industry”, Mr Van Breda said.

Partnerships with countries such as Japan will be key to the development of a strong and world-leading hydrogen industry in Queensland.

These kinds of partnerships will be critical to further developing our emerging hydrogen industry and will put Queensland on the map as a future powerhouse for clean energy exports.

Exploring opportunities for future collaboration on commercial scale operations and investments in hydrogen production is vital if Queensland is to realise the significant economic benefits and job creation opportunities hydrogen brings.

Stanwell and Iwatani’s consortium gets the ball rolling on the development of a future hydrogen supply chain with Japan which could lead to billions of dollars in export earnings for Queensland and help Japan meet its future decarbonisation ambitions.

With Queensland well positioned to be a major supplier of low emissions hydrogen, and global demand for hydrogen continuing to grow, we need to continue to develop links with future importers around the world.

Mr Van Breda said the development of a large-scale hydrogen industry would support electricity security and reliability and help underpin renewable energy integration and investment in Central Queensland.

“Stanwell is exploring opportunities to evolve in response to a changing energy market including facilitating the development of a Central Queensland hydrogen industry,” Mr Van Breda said.

“Large-scale hydrogen production would introduce new load into the region which would ease pressure on the electricity network and support the growth of renewables in the Central Queensland region.”

For more information, visit www.stanwell.com, email hydrogen@stanwell.com or read The Premier’s hydrogen partnership announcement online.

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