Port Bonython Hydrogen Hub to boost Australia's hydrogen industry


Thursday, 28 September, 2023

Port Bonython Hydrogen Hub to boost Australia's hydrogen industry

The federal and South Australian governments have finalised a grant agreement to develop the Port Bonython Hydrogen Hub near Whyalla, which they say will create regional jobs and bring Australia another step closer to becoming a “renewable energy superpower”.

Together, both governments are investing $100 million to develop infrastructure at Port Bonython and prepare it to become South Australia’s first large-scale export terminal for hydrogen. Along with private sector funding, the redeveloped Port Bonython is expected to host projects worth up to $13 billion and projected to generate as much as 1.8 million tonnes of hydrogen by 2030.

With expanses of available land, abundant solar and wind resources, South Australia is primed to become a world-class, low-cost hydrogen supplier and the SA Government says it has a comprehensive plan to develop a hydrogen industry in the Spencer Gulf, including through its Hydrogen Jobs Plan, which will include development of a hydrogen electrolyser, power station and storage facility.

The Australian Government, through the Net Zero Economy Agency and review of the National Hydrogen Strategy, will consider what is required to facilitate hydrogen supply chains. The current Australian Government says its vision is to build a clean, innovative, safe and competitive hydrogen industry that benefits all Australians, and is investing over half a billion dollars for regional hydrogen hubs including in the Pilbara, Kwinana, Gladstone, Townsville, the Hunter Valley, Bell Bay and Upper Spencer Gulf.

The recent Commonwealth Budget allocated $2 billion for a new Hydrogen Headstart program to scale up development of Australia’s renewable hydrogen industry.

By 2050, Australia’s hydrogen industry is projected to generate $50 billion in additional GDP and create over 16,000 jobs in regional Australia. The industry is also expected to create an additional 13,000 jobs from the construction of renewable energy infrastructure to power the hydrogen production.

“The global shift to clean energy and decarbonised economies is a huge economic opportunity for Australia,” said the Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese. “We are determined to grasp this opportunity and are investing half a billion dollars into regional hydrogen hubs all around Australia.”

“Our state is blessed with the key ingredients the world needs to decarbonise international economies — abundant coincident wind and solar resources, critical minerals, strong renewable energy penetration and well-developed industrial hubs,” said SA Premier Peter Malinauskas. “We’re working closely with industry to maximise this opportunity to grow a new industry, which has potential to create thousands of jobs and improve the standard of living for South Australians for generations to come.”

Image: Port Bonython. Source: South Australian Government Financing Authority.

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