Australia will begin exporting clean hydrogen to Japan as part of a multimillion-dollar program to grow the renewable energy industry.

Under a new agreement, Japan will take part in the first round of Australia’s $150m clean hydrogen trade program (ACHTP), which aims to attract overseas investment into hydrogen supplying chains originating in Australia.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the $150 million program would help deliver on Australia’s commitment to reducing emissions by working with other countries to get the cost of clean energy technologies down.

“It is critical that we work closely with our international partners such as Japan to deliver on Australia’s low emissions objectives,” the Prime Minister said.

“Clean hydrogen is central to both Australia’s and Japan’s plans to achieve net zero emissions while growing our economies and jobs.”

The ACHTP will support projects to develop export supply chains and commercialise production of clean hydrogen and derivative clean hydrogen-based compounds, such as clean ammonia.

It will be funded over five years from the $565.8 million committed for low emissions technology international partnerships in the 2021-22 Budget.

Clean hydrogen could directly support 16,000 jobs by 2050, plus an additional 13,000 jobs from the construction of related renewable energy infrastructure.

Australian hydrogen production for export and domestic use could also generate more than $50 billion in additional GDP by 2050.


Around the world

Swiss-based low-cost airline, EasyJet, has revealed plans to use green hydrogen fuel on commercial flights as early as 2030.

The airline carrier has joined Cranfield Aerospace Solutions based out of Cranfield University in Hertfordshire, southern England, to develop the technology.

Cranfield are being backed by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) and the UK Government which has awarded it £7.5 million for development.

Transport secretary Grant Shapps has also given the project his approval.


ASX hydrogen stocks

Here’s a rundown of ASX small cap companies with exposure to hydrogen.


ADX is proposing to use its depleted natural gas reservoirs in Austria’s Vienna Basin for the underground storage of green hydrogen produced using excess renewable energy.

Each reservoir could potentially store about 500 times more energy than the largest Tesla energy storage Mega Pack (about 200MWh), or enough power for 20,000 households over one year, at a much lower price.


ECT is focusing on the development of a net zero emission hydrogen refinery in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley using its Coldry technology.

This tech provides low-cost, zero-emission dewatering and drying of incoming lignite and biomass streams, which will then be fed into a thermochemical decarbonisation process to produce a hydrogen-rich synthesis gas and a char product containing most of the carbon in solid form.

The hydrogen-rich syngas is then utilised by integrated downstream applications within the project to produce hydrogen and formic acid, and generate electricity.


EDE is another tech play that is promoting its patented methane pyrolysis technology that produces hydrogen from a hydrocarbon feedstock such as natural gas while spitting out the carbon as carbon nanotubes that are potentially more valuable than the hydrogen.


GEV has developed a compressed hydrogen shipping solution that it says will provide the safe, energy efficient and cost competitive transport of hydrogen.

It has already received approval in principle from the American Bureau of Shipping for a pilot-scale Handymax-sized gas carrier, which is relatively small and able to enter most ports.

The company is also developing its Tiwi green hydrogen project in the Northern Territory that when combined with its proposed carriers, will deliver a fully integrated green hydrogen production and export supply chain.


HRZ’s patented process was first discovered in 2010 and combines methane and unprocessed iron oxide to create hydrogen and a solid graphitic carbon.

As of November 2021, the company is constructing a commercial demonstration project at the Western Australia Water Corporation’s Woodman Point Water Recovery Facility.

This will take biogas (methane) captured from sewage waste received at the plant for conversion into the green gas.


LIO is evaluating the potential for building a network of modular green hydrogen production and refuelling stations across Australia.

This will focus on infrastructure attached to the national energy market for the domestic heavy mobility market.


Originally a coal play, MR1 has turned around and revamped its Tent Mountain project into a renewable energy project integrating wind and pumped hydro to produce green hydrogen.

This is proposed to combine a 100 megawatt wind farm with 320MW of pumped hydro energy storage and a 100MW green hydrogen electrolyser to provide the Canadian state of Alberta with power grid stability as it phases out coal.

PH2 has several irons in the fire including an agreement with CAC-H2 to build three wood waste-to-hydrogen plants on the east coast of Australia and a strategic stake in fuel cell pioneer H2X Global.

The company also plans to use pyrolysis process to convert methane from its Serowe coal seam gas project in Botswana and the Venus CSG project in Queensland into blue hydrogen.

PRL is developing the HyEnergy green hydrogen project in Western Australia’s Gascoyne region, which will be supported by up to 8 gigawatts of renewable energy.

It is also working with Global Energy Ventures on a feasibility study into the use of compressed hydrogen as the preferred export carrier for HyEnergy gas.

TNG has formed a joint venture with Malaysia’s AGV Energy to progress a green hydrogen project in Darwin.

This could be expanded to other sites in Australia.


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