Four new members will join a consortium between Queensland generator Stanwell and Japan’s largest hydrogen supplier Iwatani, which will commence a $10.4 million feasibility study into the development of a large-scale renewable hydrogen facility in Gladstone.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said it was further progress towards Queensland becoming a renewable hydrogen superpower.
“Since we first announced the landmark partnership between Iwatani and the publicly-owned Stanwell, land has also been secured for a three-gigawatt facility in Aldoga, west of Gladstone,” the Premier said.
“Now the partnership is growing, with four new members, while a detailed study will progress the plans to tap into the massive potential energy export industry.”
The announcement of the consortium members - Japanese companies Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kansai Electric Power Company and Marubeni, and Australian energy infrastructure business, APA Group - is a show of international confidence in Queensland’s growing reputation as an ideal location for renewable hydrogen projects.
Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni said the consortium brought together high-calibre expertise across the hydrogen supply chain – including renewable energy, hydrogen production, liquefaction, shipping and offtake.
The project aims ultimately to export renewable hydrogen to Japan, as well as supply large industrial customers in the Central Queensland region to support emissions reduction for domestic industry by 2026.
“On top of the feasibility study, Stanwell will also undertake a study into local workforce and manufacturing development, because we want regional Queenslanders to get decent, secure jobs supplying renewable hydrogen to the world.
“The Stanwell-Iwatani project has the potential to underpin the future of both hydrogen export to Japan and Queensland’s domestic supply chain.”
Mr de Brenni also acknowledged the financial support nationally from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and internationally from the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.
Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing, Minister for Water and Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher said the MOU represented another opportunity to cement Gladstone's position as Australia's hydrogen capital.
“Gladstone has already proven a powerhouse when it comes to LNG exports and the emerging hydrogen industry represents the next phase in the region's long-term future," Mr Butcher said.
"As the industry continues to grow it will provide secure jobs in renewable energy in Gladstone and huge supply chain opportunities for manufacturers across the Central Queensland region.”
APA Group CEO and Managing Director Rob Wheals said he was thrilled to continue to support a lower carbon future and opportunities to unlock high quality infrastructure solutions.
“Queensland has some of the best sun and wind resources in Australia, making it well placed to not only develop an export hydrogen supply chain, but demonstrate the benefits of unlocking renewable hydrogen in our regions,” Mr Wheals said.
“Australia’s advantages in hydrogen are enormous and this project could be a game-changer in helping Queensland develop a hydrogen industry at scale.”
Stanwell Acting Chief Executive Officer Adam Aspinall said Stanwell welcomed the opportunity to work alongside some of the industry’s best on the development of Central Queensland’s large-scale renewable hydrogen industry.
“Stanwell is excited to be leading the development of Queensland’s next big industry. We believe hydrogen has an important role to play in supporting electricity security and reliability and reinforcing renewable energy integration and investment in Queensland,” Mr Aspinall said.
“While there’s still a way to go for hydrogen to be commercial, collaboration with key partners across all parts of the supply chain is critical to helping drive down the cost of hydrogen technologies and supporting the development of the industry.
“The idea that Queensland’s very own energy generators and ports could play a key role in meeting global hydrogen demand, as well as supply local industry, is exciting.”