- ARENA has selected 3 renewable hydrogen projects under its $103.3 million Renewable Hydrogen Funding Round
- Engie Renewables with Yara Pilbara Fertilisers will set up a 10 MW electrolyzer project to produce ammonia
- ATCO Australia will set up another 10 MW electrolyzer in Western Australia for gas blending
- AGIG will also establish 10 MW electrolyzer project for gas blending in Victoria
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has ‘conditionally approved’ a total amount of $103.3 million ($80 million) to support development of 3 commercial scale renewable hydrogen projects in the country, altogether which will enable development of 30 MW electrolyzer capacity as 3×10 MW projects.
According to ARENA, at 10 MW the electrolyzers in these hydrogen plants will be among the largest so far built in the world.
ARENA had launched the solicitation for the Renewable Hydrogen Funding Round in April 2020 committing $70 million to the winners (see AUD 70 Million ARENA Funding For Renewable Hydrogen). It has now scaled up the commitment by $33.3 million to $103.3 million.
Engie Renewables Australia Pty Ltd has secured $ 42.5 million to set up a 10 MW electrolyzer project which will produce renewable hydrogen along with Yara Pilbara Fertilisers. It will be set up at the existing ammonia facility of Yara in Karratha in Western Australia to produce ammonia.
An amount of $ 28.7 million has been awarded to ATCO Australia Pty Ltd for a 10 MW electrolyzer to be set up at the company’s Clean Energy Innovation Park in Warradarge, also in Western Australia to be used for gas blending.
Australian Gas Networks Limited (AGIG) has won up to $32.1 million in funding for another 10 MW electrolyzer project for gas blending at its Murray Valley Hydrogen Park in Wodonga in Victoria.
Winners now need to satisfy a number of development conditions and achieve financial close before the funding is released.
All 3 projects represent a combined project value of $161 million, according to the Australian government agency as it expects these to play a significant role in supporting commercial scale deployments of renewable hydrogen in the country aligned with the national target to achieve H2 under $2.00.
The trio made it to the finishing line out of 36 expressions of interest (EOI) received by ARENA of which 7 firms were shortlisted in July 2020 (see ARENA Shortlists 7 Firms For Renewable Hydrogen Funding).
“Our hydrogen industry in Australia is in its infancy, so the lessons learned from these three projects – and the entire funding round – will be important in driving our future hydrogen economy,” said ARENA CEO Darren Miller. “With the round stimulating interest in the sector, we can see a number of well-progressed feasibility studies and large projects emerging. Australia is well placed to become a major player as the clean hydrogen market develops.”
Even beyond state funding, interested stakeholders in Australia are increasingly exploring opportunities in the renewable hydrogen space. In March 2021, Shale oil company QEM appointed E2C Advisory Pty Ltd to help it explore renewable hydrogen produced with the help of solar powered electrolyzers to use for hydrogeneration of its raw oil into transport fuels in Queensland (see Australian Oil Miner To Pursue Green Hydrogen Strategy).