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AGL & FFI contemplating 2 GW Hunter Valley hydrogen hub

Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) and AGL Energy have enlarged the scope of their feasibility assessment for hydrogen production at the site of two of AGL’s coal-fired power units to include exports from a 2GW/yr facility.

The location in the Hunter valley area of New South Wales (NSW) can host a hydrogen facility of up to 2GW and a minimum of 150MW, with output including green ammonia and hydrogen for export and local consumption, according to Markus Brokhof, AGL’s chief operating officer.

Japanese utility Osaka Gas, Japanese upstream company Inpex, and Australian gas and power infrastructure businesses APA Group and Jemena have joined the project as new partners.

The December 2016 agreement between GL and FFI included a feasibility assessment to repurpose infrastructure at the 1,680MW Liddell black coal-fired power station, which is scheduled to retire by April 2023, and the 2,640MW Bayswater, which is expected to close by 2030-33.

The New South Wales state government said in March that it had received possible investment ideas worth more than A$4bn ($3bn) in response to a request for expressions of interest for a proposed hydrogen hub in the Hunter valley and Illawarra area. Both hubs will be placed in locations that have historically produced coal.

The addition of Osaka Gas is the result of a June contract between Osaka Gas and AGL Energy. Osaka Gas is also participating in other hydrogen initiatives in Australia, including the Aqua Aerem-led Desert Bloom project in the Northern Territory.

In February, Inpex announced plans to invest up to $38 billion over the next eight years to establish a sustainable energy industry in order to satisfy its greenhouse gas emission reduction goals.


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