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NSW is set to attract more than $80 billion of investment, drive deep decarbonisation and establish itself as an energy and economic superpower with today’s launch of the NSW Hydrogen Strategy, the State Government announced.

Premier Dominic Perrottet says as NSW worked through post-lockdown recovery, hydrogen was an opportunity to drive new investment and help secure jobs right across the state.

“Australia has an opportunity to be an energy superpower; New South Wales will lead the country with this hydrogen strategy,” Premier Perrottet said. 

“Our major trading partners see hydrogen as part of their energy future; this state has the skills, infrastructure and renewable energy resources to compete globally in this new industry.” Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole says hydrogen was a huge opportunity for regional NSW.

“We know that regional economies are diversifying, and the NSW government’s Hydrogen Strategy is bringing that to life,” Mr Toole said.   

“Places like Parkes, the Illawarra, and the Upper Hunter are uniquely placed to take advantage of these opportunities, with existing supply lines, access to transport links and a skilled workforce ready to make regional NSW a leader in hydrogen technology.”

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Treasurer and Energy Minister Matt Kean says the strategy, which will provide up to $3 billion in incentives, will set the State up as a global hydrogen leader and is forecast to increase the size of the NSW economy by more than $600 million by 2030.

“Hydrogen will not only help the State halve our emissions by 2030 and get to net zero by 2050, it will create new opportunities for our heavy industry, and an economic bonanza of investment and jobs,” Minister Kean said.

“This strategy is forecast to more than halve the cost of green hydrogen production in NSW and will make NSW the best place to invest in hydrogen in the world,” he added.

Fortescue Future Industries chairman and founder Dr Andrew Forrest AO said: “I am delighted with NSW’s historic hydrogen strategy and ambition to set itself up as an energy and economic superpower.

“NSW is taking a state leadership position providing clear pathways for how renewable hydrogen can deliver for Australian businesses, Australian jobs, communities and our children’s future.

“At FFI we are doing everything we can as a business to lead the world effort to lower emissions. We are planning to deliver 15 million tonnes of renewable green hydrogen to the world by 2030 – increasing to 50 million tonnes per year thereafter.

“We are committed to working with the NSW Government to support their ambitions and develop Green Hydrogen Hubs together.”

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In addition to delivering an already committed $70 million to develop the State’s hydrogen hubs in the Illawarra and the Hunter, the strategy includes:

  1. Exemptions for green hydrogen production from government charges;
  2. A 90 per cent exemption from electricity network charges for green hydrogen producers that connect to parts of the network with spare capacity;
  3. Incentives for green hydrogen production; and
  4. A hydrogen refuelling station network to be rolled out across the State.

Business will be to submit an expression of interest to participate in the hydrogen hubs by the end of October.

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The Australian Hydrogen Council today applauded the New South Wales Government on its Hydrogen Strategy.

“Setting aside $3 billion to support the scale-up of our hydrogen industry is a leap in the right direction, a clear demonstration to us that the New South Wales Government is serious about meeting its net-zero commitments and the role of hydrogen to get there,” said Dr Fiona Simon, CEO of the Australian Hydrogen Council.

“The strategy contains precisely the type of policy commitments, targets and funding that we have called for in our recent white paper Unlocking Australia’s Hydrogen Opportunity, and we are delighted to see the NSW Government taking this next evolutionary step.

“In line with our white paper, the NSW Government has committed to prioritising heavy transport, trucks and refuelling infrastructure; heavy transport is a key sector that needs hydrogen to decarbonise, replacing petrol and diesel with hydrogen.

“Australia has enormous opportunity to lead the world in the production, use and export of hydrogen and the NSW Government has demonstrated the leadership needed to drive the creation of the clean hydrogen industry.

“We are glad the NSW Government has stepped up to the level at which our trading partners are competing.

“Plans and funding like this will mean Australia should not miss the boat on international opportunities and instead, will be well positioned to be a leading producer and user of hydrogen in Australia and globally.

“This kind of strategy will draw through huge amounts of investment needed to secure local jobs of the future, from now.

“An Australian hydrogen industry will require large scale electrolysers, renewable electricity, hydrogen storage, water and water pipelines, electricity infrastructure, CCS as appropriate, and hydrogen pipelines. Planning, with the right funding and targets is a vital part of getting this industry to scale and we look forward to working with the NSW Government to chart the State’s path to net-zero using hydrogen,” Dr Simon concluded.

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