Steps forward to further Australia’s low emissions hydrogen industry future

Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel AO, has released his proposal for a national hydrogen strategy, at the COAG Energy Council meeting in Adelaide.

At its meeting on 19 December 2018, the Energy Council agreed to establish a dedicated Working Group, chaired by the Chief Scientist, to lead activities that achieve this vision. The hydrogen strategy will be in place by the end of 2019.

As outlined in the proposal and associated workplan the Working Group will focus on six streams of work: hydrogen exports; hydrogen for transport; hydrogen in the gas network; hydrogen for industrial users; hydrogen to support electricity systems; and cross-cutting issues.  Key priorities for the Working Group include developing a national hydrogen strategy for 2020-2030, and a co-ordinated approach to projects and programs that support industry development.

The Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) Project Partners today welcomed this major step forward and commend the COAG Energy Council for their support of the proposal for the development of a clean, innovative and competitive hydrogen industry that benefits all Australians and is a major global player by 2030.

HESC project spokesperson, Mr Yasushi Yoshino, said: “The HESC Project Partners welcome progress on the development of a hydrogen strategy for Australia, which will identify the right policy and regulatory environment for the creation of a thriving hydrogen export and domestic industry for Australia.

“As the most advanced hydrogen export project in the country, the HESC Project will be paramount for the effective realisation of the hydrogen strategy for Australia, as well as Japan’s vision for a hydrogen society outlined in Japan’s Basic Hydrogen Strategy.

“The HESC Project is an exciting opportunity for Australia and Japan to partner for mutual benefit and to work towards creating an environmentally sustainable, low emissions solution which will put Australia at the forefront of clean energy supply here and around the world.

“We believe this proposal will encourage public and private investment, increase commercial viability, send the right signals to Australia’s trading partners and ensure social acceptance of hydrogen.

“Our HESC Project Partners, Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI), Hydrogen Engineering Australia (HEA), J-Power, J-Power Latrobe Valley (JPLV), Iwatani, Marubeni and AGL, are honoured and grateful to have established a meaningful partnership with the Japanese, Australian and Victorian Governments. HESC is a world-first project with the best potential to prove the success of a commercial scale hydrogen supply chain.”

Mr Yoshino said the Project Partners look forward to engaging with the Chief Scientist and all relevant stakeholders and bringing their hydrogen expertise to bear for the development of the best possible hydrogen strategy in Australia.

“We remain fully committed to collaborating with the Australian Governments and contribute to a world leading national hydrogen policy,” he said.

The ‘Hydrogen for Australia’s future’ briefing paper released by the Chief Scientist for the COAG Energy Council in August; and the ‘Opportunities for Australia from hydrogen exports’ report by ARENA both highlight that ‘With the right conditions, Australian hydrogen exports could contribute A$1.7 billion per annum to the economy and provide 2,800 jobs by 2030’. Both publications are available at

The HESC is an innovative, world-first hydrogen project. The pilot-scale project will demonstrate the viability of producing liquefied hydrogen from brown coal, in Victoria, for export to Japan. Leveraging Victoria’s Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) infrastructure will be paramount for the commercial phase to ensure emissions-free hydrogen production.

The HESC will commence construction of the small-scale pilot facilities in 2019 and the pilot phase will operate for approximately one year from 2020.

For more information, please contact:

Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain Project (HESC)
Phone: 1800 875 251
E-mail: [email protected]

Share this article