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Prospective hydrogen production regions of Australia - geospatial inputs

Abstract

There is significant interest in Australia, both federally and at the state level, to develop a hydrogen production industry. Australia’s Chief Scientist, Alan Finkel, recently prepared a briefing paper for the COAG Energy Council outlining a road map for hydrogen. It identifies hydrogen has the potential to be a significant source of export revenue for Australia in future years, assist with decarbonising Australia’s economy and could establish Australia as a leader in low emission fuel production.

As part of the ongoing investigations into the hydrogen production potential of Australia, Geoscience Australia has been commissioned by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science to develop heat maps that show areas with high potential for future hydrogen production. The study is technology agnostic, in that it considers hydrogen production via electrolysis using renewable energy sources and also fossil fuel hydrogen coupled with carbon capture and storage (CCS). The heat maps presented in this work are synthesized from the key individual national-scale datasets that are relevant for hydrogen production. In the case of hydrogen from electrolysis, renewable energy potential and the availability of water are the most important factors, with various infrastructural considerations playing a secondary role. In the case of fossil fuel hydrogen, proximity to gas and coal resources, water and availability of carbon storage sites are the important parameters that control the heat maps. In this report we present 5 different heat map scenarios, reflecting different assumptions in the geospatial analysis and also reflecting to some degree the different projected timeframes for hydrogen production. The first three scenarios pertain to renewable energy and hydrogen There is significant interest in Australia, both federally and at the state level, to develop a hydrogen production industry. In August 2018, Australia’s Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel, prepared a briefing paper for the COAG Energy Council outlining a road map for hydrogen. It identifies hydrogen has the potential to be a significant source of export revenue for Australia in future years, assist with decarbonising Australia’s economy and could establish Australia as a leader in low emission fuel production.

As part of ongoing investigations into the hydrogen production potential of Australia, Geoscience Australia has been engaged by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science to develop maps that show areas with high potential for future hydrogen production. The study is technology agnostic, but considers only low carbon production processes. It includes hydrogen production via electrolysis using renewable energy sources (referred to as renewable hydrogen), as well as fossil fuel-derived hydrogen coupled with carbon capture and storage (CCS) (referred to as CCS hydrogen). The maps presented in this work are synthesized from the key individual national-scale datasets that are relevant for hydrogen production. In the case of hydrogen from electrolysis, renewable energy potential (from wind, solar and hydro resources) and the availability of water are the most important factors, while various infrastructure considerations also play a role. In the case of CCS hydrogen, proximity to gas and coal resources, water and availability of carbon storage sites are the important parameters that control the spatial distribution of potential hydrogen production. In this report we present five different scenarios that reflect key differences in technologies for hydrogen production and the requirements of those technologies. Using geospatial analysis, each scenario is translated into a heat map that shows regional trends in potential for hydrogen production, based on access to underpinning resources and existing infrastructure.

Three scenarios explore the future potential for renewable hydrogen produced by electrolysis. These demonstrate a high potential for hydrogen production in the future near many Australian coastal areas, which is even larger if infrastructure is available to transport renewable power generated from inland areas to the coast. Results also show significant future potential for hydrogen production in inland areas where water is available. The final two scenarios focus on the future potential for CCS hydrogen: a 2030 scenario and a 2050 scenario. A key factor in future CCS hydrogen potential is related to the timeframes for the availability of geological storage resources for CO2.


Related subjects: Production & Supply Chain
Countries: Australia
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2019-10-15
2021-12-04
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/policypaper1893
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Supplements

Scenario 1: Renewable wind solar and hydropower resource potential without infrastructure constraints

Scenario 2: Renewable Hydrogen – Future coastal production and constrained by existing infrastructure

Scenario 3: Renewable hydrogen – Coastal or inland generation hydrogen transported via pipeline and constrained by existing infrastructure

Scenario 4: CCS Hydrogen – Advanced development

Scenario 5: CCS Hydrogen – Greenfield areas

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