Federal Labor has promised to devote $1 billion to developing the Australian hydrogen sector, as part of a plan designed to "supercharge Australia's renewable energy industry".
The plan would see a $3 million National Hydrogen Innovation Hub created in Gladstone, Queensland, driven by the broader promise of growth in the burgeoning hydrogen industry. According to the Federal Opposition, the industry could be worth $10 billion over the next two decades.
Funding will come predominately from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC). Also included in the plan is $10 million for hydrogen refuelling infrastructure around Australia, with that money coming from currently un-allocated Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) funding.
Although the hub would be in Queensland, Mark Butler, Shadow Minister for Climate Change and the Environment, took to Twitter arguing the plan will "benefit all states, including the huge hydrogen export potential in WA".
According to Hydrogen Mobility Australia CEO, Claire Johnson, proper support could make Australia a "hydrogen powerhouse, producing hydrogen for our own international economies to power zero emission vehicles".
The Clean Energy Council threw its support behind the plan, arguing we need to "rapidly reduce emissions in a way that maintains the reliability of our electricity supply and at a low cost".
"This means renewable energy with storage, hydrogen and the development of other new technologies and approaches,” said Kane Thornton, Clean Energy Council CEO.
“We have a fantastic opportunity to build on the work done by CSIRO and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) recently, on creating hydrogen using renewable energy and converting it to a form where it can be exported."
MORE: Hydrogen coverage