Australian Hydrogen: NERA’s future regional network

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Australian hydrogen could become ultra-competitive by 2030 following an announcement by National Energy Resources Australia. Indeed, the agency (NERA) has just unveiled the development of a network of 13 regional hydrogen hubs. The goal is to establish a nationwide hydrogen cluster and make Australia the future leader in the global hydrogen market.

Australian hydrogen, a new priority for the country

The result of a thought process launched in 2019

Australian hydrogen is expected to be the subject of a network of 13 regional clusters. This was unveiled by NERA on Monday, February 1, 2021. It will function as a virtual network on a regional and national scale.

The development of this national hydrogen cluster was identified in the 2019 National Hydrogen Strategy. But the establishment of these regional clusters also responds to the conclusions of the Regional Program of Start-up Financing of Hydrogen Technology Clusters announced in September 2020.

Australia will identify gaps in the development, deployment and commercialization of new hydrogen technologies. The technologies developed will cover the entire value chain. They will concern fuel cells, turbine sensors and the electrolyser components that make up these elements.

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1.85 million endowment to invest in strategic territories

NERA has secured a range of funding commitments from state and territorial governments across the country. To which we add financial support from the industry. These hubs are located in strategic locations that have demonstrated their ability to support them.

As a result, the total investment of $1.85 million covers all Australian states and territories. The most endowed are Victoria and Western Australia. This is how Victoria totals $600,000 in investments for its four clusters.

The investments are therefore used to develop the hydrogen supply chain and reduce duplication. Also, in this country with an unemployment rate of 6.6% in December 2020, this would create many jobs.

A major Australian strategy to conquer the global market

1.5 billion in hydrogen investments by 2020

According to BloombergNEF, global investment in hydrogen was $1.5 billion in 2020. This is a 20% decrease compared to the previous year. But according to Albert Cheung, head of analysis at BloombergNEF:

“technologies like hydrogen are attracting only a fraction of the investment they will need in the 2020s to reduce emissions.”

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Pooling Australia’s efforts to provide global leadership

Australia intends to respond to this decline. Connecting the Australian players, NERA CEO Miranda Taylor wants them to combine some of their solutions and think about the needs of the market. The goal is to produce hydrogen at less than $2 per kilogram.

The challenge then is to try to provide leadership and investment in this entire value chain by 2030. Not only will this national cluster establish a true global identity. But it will also be a recognition of Australian hydrogen technology and expertise.

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