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27 Oct 2023

The Australian Government makes two grants, one to the Queensland Hydrogen Hub and the other to critical mineral facilities

Amy Power
The Australian Government makes two grants, one to the Queensland Hydrogen Hub and the other to critical mineral facilities

The Australian Government has agreed to give a grant of $69.2m to the Central Queensland Hydrogen Hub project, located in Gladstone, to aid its development.

The Central Queensland Hydrogen Hub is an innovative and important project which plans to have the capacity to produce an estimated 292,000 tons of hydrogen annually by 2031. The Hub also aims to be able to provide 8,900 jobs in construction, trades and engineering, portraying the benefits this hub is planning to bring.

A further investment of $139m will come from Stanwell Corporation, the company who has been placed in charge of construction, which will begin in early 2024 and will bring the aim of the facility being in operation by mid-2027. The plan for the infrastructure of the building is large and impressive with aims to encompass a hydrogen electrolyser, pipeline and underground hydrogen storage. The purpose for this is to support the hydrogen production and use in Australia and overseas.

The investments provided to this project will bring the total funding to $138m making it part of the Australian Government’s Regional Hydrogen Hubs Program. This program is investing more than $500m in up to seven hydrogen hubs across the country. These hubs will be located in, Gladstone, Port Bonython, Bell Bay, Pilbara, Kwinana and the Hunter Valley, and there are plans for future hubs in Townsville. These investments going into these hubs are happening in order to make it possible for producers, users and exporters of hydrogen to work together, sharing infrastructure and expertise. This makes up part of the Government’s plan to transform Australia into a country that is leading in green energy generation and innovation.

Along with these investments, following the meeting of the Australia-United States Taskforce on Critical Minerals, the Government has also decided to double its investment in a critical minerals facility, bringing this investment to $4bn. The idea behind this is to enable the Government to offer support to projects which are unable to be fully financed by the market.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, commented, “This means we can support projects that build onshore processing and refining, and draw in like-minded investments, including from the US. In our quest to build a better future, one of the things that makes it possible to reach so high is what lies beneath our feet. And in our continent, nowhere is that truer than in Western Australia.”

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