Trad in town to talk up Gladstone as hydrogen hub
ACTING premier Jackie Trad visited Yarwun's Northern Oil Refinery yesterday to reiterate the State Government's commitment to renewables, including hydrogen.
Ms Trad said Gladstone was "at the forefront" and had the potential to be a world leader in production of bio-hydrogen.
"Northern Oil is one of the great success stories of the Palaszczuk Government's push into the new world of renewable energy and renewable fuels," Ms Trad said.
"This is a really exciting site. It means jobs for Queenslanders but also jobs in the new economy and I'm really pleased Gladstone is at the forefront of this.
"The Queensland Government is backing Gladstone when it comes to being the powerhouse for future fuel and energy sources."
Dr David Harris from the CSIRO was also present and discussed the organisation's growing role with the refinery.
"What CSIRO is trying to do is to bridge the gap between some of the fundamental research and getting the technologies out into industry where they can actually start to make a difference," Dr Harris said.
"We are working with partners across the hydrogen value chain from production of hydrogen from renewable sources, storage of that hydrogen, transportation and utilisation.
"Using existing industries and their infrastructures we are able to reach a scale of impact of renewables that you wouldn't be able to do if it was a fragmented exercise with individual technologies.
"Some of the technologies you see here today are exactly at the scale that we need to get much of our research to, so it can reach the industries that will ultimately need to take that on, commercialise it and turn the conceptual value chains into real new industries.
"There is an opportunity here for Australia and Queensland to develop that value chain so we actually have, potentially, a large-scale export renewable energy industry which doesn't exist anywhere in the world today.
"It's a very exciting opportunity to bring renewable energy to scale and to the world."
Southern Oil Refineries general manager Ben Tabulo said hydrogen was an important chemical for Central Queensland.
"We need that hydrogen to make those renewable fuels that we've said can be made in Australia, Queensland and in Gladstone," Mr Tabulo said.
"It's going to happen in Gladstone. Gladstone is the place for hydrogen with the port, the resources and the great industry support networks.
"We're looking with our friends from CSIRO to look at Gladstone as a great opportunity for hydrogen."
Gladstone MP Glenn Butcher echoed Mr Tabulo's sentiments.
"We've got Queensland's significant renewable resources, and combined with our existing gas pipeline infrastructure and port facilities we can be a leader in the future production and export of hydrogen," Mr Butcher said.
"Gladstone has a distinct competitive advantage when it comes to this brand new industry. We're open for business and by seeing these companies come to Gladstone, with CSIRO here, certainly gives the tick to Gladstone as a place to come and do business."
Mayor Matt Burnett described the Northern Oil Refinery as his "favourite place on earth".
"They need to give me a room, I'm pretty much living here now," Cr Burnett said.
"We've got CSIRO here and I'm very excited to be talking to their team about bringing their technology and their hub to the Gladstone region.
"It's just not about renewables and not just about bio - if we can move into the hydrogen market there is going to be a worldwide need for this and the Gladstone region is going to be leading the way."