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$2million of Qld Government funding to support a local green hydrogen economy in Goondiwindi

The Hydrogen Collective (H2C) has supported Goondiwindi Regional Council to secure $2million from the Queensland Government Hydrogen Industry Development Fund to construct a green hydrogen production facility at the Goondiwindi Wastewater Treatment Plant. This contribution to a $15million project will assist in reducing the cost of green hydrogen production and enable cheaper, greener energy distribution to locals. See the full announcement from the Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning here.

In early 2021, H2C were commissioned by Council to undertake a local assessment report on how to develop a local green hydrogen supply chain. This report informed how green hydrogen could be produced and used in the local area and the impacts this would have on the local economy and environment. The key was identifying specific local projects to develop supply and demand, and securing the people, funds and feasibility to initiate projects.

Supply would initially be based at the local WWTP and benefit from the resultant oxygen from the electrolysis process. Integrating oxygen into the WWTP increases plant capacity and provides operational efficiencies. The integration of oxygen will have a delayed capital impact of almost $20 million for Council and local ratepayers. This integrated systems approach increases the commercial value of electrolysis beyond hydrogen. assists in negating some of the early market high costs of production and saves Council significant capital expense relating to the upgrade of the facility.

Demand has been the challenge as the green hydrogen market does not currently exist. Local energy consumers have no knowledge of green hydrogen, but are looking to transition to more sustainable energy sources. For the last 12 months, H2C has been working with local businesses to analyse their energy profile and systems, then provide green hydrogen solutions for stationary power, gas replacement, mobility and industrial uses. These businesses are committed to this transition so that they can offer their clients and customers 'Green' products and services, a key requirement for both domestic and export businesses.

There are now several local businesses in a position to commit to the use of green hydrogen to power fuel cell systems, gas turbines and gradually transition vehicles to this emission free fuel. The localisation of production and distribution has been a key factor in the feasibility of the project. H2C, Council and Queensland University of Technology are now progressing the development of a local green hydrogen supply chain under a Cooperative Agreement.

The recent announcement of an Memorandum of Understanding between the State Governments of Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria to develop hydrogen refueling infrastructure has strengthened the long term development of a local supply chain. Situated on the Newell highway, and a key refueling location for heavy vehicles, Goondiwindi is well placed to supply the future demand of green hydrogen expected by 2026. Future potential for connections to inland rail projects are also a factor in developing a local supply chain.

This holistic supply chain development approach has been the key to proving the technical and commercial feasibility of the current and future projects. Balancing initial small scale supply with demand while planning future opportunities to increase production and application provides a solid foundation to develop a local supply chain. With construction beginning later this year, is is expected that production will commence later in 2023.

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