The State of Victoria is perfectly positioned to take advantage of hydrogen and associated technological applications, given its supply of renewable energy sources, existing scalable energy, industry infrastructure, established government policy agenda and skilled workforce.
If the Commonwealth and state government get the policy settings right, zero-emissions hydrogen technology can boost Victorian and Australian GDP growth, create a new sustainable job market while helping to shift Australia away from its reliance on fossil fuels, especially coal.
An integrated hydrogen sector could lead to the creation of thousands of high-skilled, hightech, well-paid, and secure blue and white-collar jobs in the hydrogen industry. Downstream, it has unmatched potential as a clean energy fuel that can power heavy industry and manufacturing. Victoria could become a leading green steel producer, and Australian capital of hydrogen exports, in terms of actual production and related clean energy products but only with the right investment and regulatory framework. Producing the intellectual property that makes the hydrogen economy tick is an important way Victoria can contribute to and benefit from its development. In turn, given its interconnections with wind and solar, hydrogen is a missing part of renewables jigsaw. Its practical application runs the gamut of clean, green transport, both private or public, and more efficient household energy consumption.
A Victorian hydrogen industry represents a once in a lifetime opportunity. If the investment and policy settings are right, Victoria will play an integral role in shaping Australia’s long-term economic recovery from COVID-19.