Australia plans to spend $417 M on hydrogen, carbon capture

Australia plans to spend $417 M on hydrogen, carbon capture


CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia’s prime minister has proposed spending an extra 539 million Australian dollars ($417 million) on hydrogen and carbon sequestration projects, seeking to burnish his government’s green credentials ahead of a climate summit to be hosted by President Joe Biden.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the money to be spent on building new hydrogen-producing hubs and carbon capture technologies would create more than 2,500 jobs while reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

“It is essential we position Australia to succeed by investing now in the technologies that will support our industries into the future, with lower emissions energy that can support Australian jobs,” Morrison said in a statement.

“We cannot pretend the world is not changing. If we do, we run the risk of stranding jobs in this country, especially in regional areas,” he added.

The funding will be detailed in the government’s economic blueprint for the next fiscal year which will be made public on May 11. The spending requires Parliament’s approval.

A little over half the money would be spent on increasing the number of hydrogen-producing hubs in regional Australia from one to five. A hub is a region where hydrogen producers, users and exporters are located together.

Australia is already one of the world’s largest exporters of liquified natural gas and coal, both polluting fossil fuels. The government wants Australia to become a major global hydrogen supplier by 2030, aiming to reduce production costs to less than AU$2 ($1.54) a kilogram (2.2 pounds).

Australia is home to the world’s largest carbon capture and storage facility at Chevron’s Gorgon natural gas project on Barrow Island off its northwest coast. The project has stored more than 4...

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