22 January 2019: Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has announced a $1 billion pledge for the development of an Australian hydrogen industry, identifying the resource as an “emerging and exciting source of energy across the world” and the potential for Australia to be at the forefront of the proclaimed “hydrogen revolution”.

The suggested plan highlights the prospect of job creation and supporting new businesses through Australia’s hydrogen future.

The Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) Project Partners welcome this announcement, as a sign of bipartisanship support and a shared long-term vision for a thriving hydrogen industry. The Project Partners are benefiting from joint funding from both the Federal Coalition Government and the Victorian Labor Government to establish a world-first hydrogen supply chain from Australia to Japan. Both governments share the conviction that hydrogen will play a key role in Australia’s and Japan’s future, as demand for the clean, adaptable resource grows at a remarkable rate. HESC will commence its pilot phase operation in 2020.

“This [Australian hydrogen industry] plan marks the shared commitment in Australia’s political sphere to hydrogen, significantly enabling Australia’s clean energy future, which we are honoured to be a part of,” HESC project spokesperson Mr Yasushi Yoshino said.

“The holistic approach of the plan focussing on a spectrum of hydrogen technologies will create the right conditions for a viable, thriving Australian hydrogen industry, in which HESC will play a significant role. This vision includes the CarbonNet Project, which provides a potential carbon capture and storage (CCS) for HESC and is jointly funded by both federal and state governments as well. Clean hydrogen from coal, coupled with CCS, will be instrumental in facilitating the commercial transition to a fully renewable hydrogen future.”

The HESC Project Partners encourage the synergies between this announcement and the COAG Energy Council’s endorsement of Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel AO’s proposal for a national hydrogen strategy. This announcement, in December 2018, will see the development of a national hydrogen strategy, by the end of 2019, which will outline a pathway of development of a clean, innovative and competitive hydrogen industry that benefits all Australians.