Report gives all clear to hydrogen in gas networks

Energy Networks Australia (ENA) has released a report by law firm Johnson Winter & Slattery exploring the injection of hydrogen and biogas into Australia’s gas distribution channels.

The report will help inform the National Hydrogen Strategy, led by Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel.

ENA CEO Andrew Dillon said the legislative approval detailed in the report would help encourage hydrogen development.

“There are already trials under development by gas distributors that aim to blend renewable hydrogen into existing gas networks,” he said.

“Hydrogen can play an important role in not only helping Australia’s gas networks decarbonise, but as energy storage.

“Flexible hydrogen production can help soak up excess renewable electricity on sunny and windy days, then fuel cells can generate emissions-free power on still evenings.”

Those projects already underway include Jemena’s Project H2GO, a $15 million trial using hydrogen in the gas transmission network in New South Wales.

Mr Dillon said the right conditions would help turn these trial projects into a legitimate national industry.

“Funding for research and development, backed by bipartisan national support, will drive the commercialisation of hydrogen technologies,” he said.

“Establishing a strong, domestic hydrogen industry will allow for the development and acceleration of Australia’s hydrogen export industry.”

Hydrogen has been building considerable momentum as a fuel source since Dr Finkel said last year that it had the potential as an export opportunity to contribute $1.7 billion to the economy and provide 2,800 jobs by 2030.

For more information visit the Energy Networks Australia website.

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