Eyre Peninsula and Port Lincoln could soon be the hydrogen capital of the world, according to Regional Development Australia Whyalla and Eyre Peninsula’s Peter Scott.
The RDAWEP economic development manager spoke at the Eyre Peninsula Local Government Association Conference in Port Lincoln on Monday, providing a look at the opportunities for hydrogen in the region.
On February 12 it was announced South Australia’s first green hydrogen plant will be built near Port Lincoln.
Mr Scott said ever since the announcement of the plant Port Lincoln had gained worldwide attention.
He said the opportunity was there to bring more money into the region through the export of liquid hydrogen, particularly into Asian countries like Korea and Japan.
“(Hydrogen) cars are going to be big in Asia, big in Japan,” he said.
We are the seafood capital of Australia and we're going to be the hydrogen capital of the world.Peter Scott
“There’s money to be made by exporting hydrogen out of here to these guys.”
Mr Scott said the potential of a port at Cape Hardy could provide the avenue for hydrogen containers to be exported out of Eyre Peninsula.
He said as well as providing hydrogen for vehicles there were also opportunities for fertiliser production as well as the plant providing energy grid stability and providing an electrical load to constrained wind farms.
The hydrogen produced will be used to power a 10-megawatt hydrogen-fired gas turbine and a 5-megawatt hydrogen fuel cell, which will supply power to the energy grid.
Mr Scott said they had two to three years to demonstrate the business case for hydrogen production on Eyre Peninsula but it had great potential.
He said a potential hydrogen gas industry on Eyre Peninsula could rival Queensland’s liquefied natural gas industry.
“We already export the world’s best seafood, the world’s best grain and we are already entrepreneurs...we are tough and can get things done,” he said.
“We are the seafood capital of Australia and we're going to be the hydrogen capital of the world.”
Lower Eyre Peninsula mayor Julie Low said the having a green hydrogen energy plant on Eyre Peninsula would be a plus for the local economy and “another feather in our bow”.
The project is led by Hydrogen Utility chief executive officer Dr Attilio Pigneri in partnership with Thyssenkrupp.
It is supported by RDAWEP, ElectraNet and the South Australian No-Till Farmers Association.