Prime Minister Scott Morrison has announced $539.2 million for new clean hydrogen and carbon capture, use and storage projects as part of the Morrison Government’s 2021-22 Budget.
The commitment involves:
- $275.5 million to accelerate the development of four additional clean hydrogen hubs in regional Australia and implement a clean hydrogen certification scheme.
- $263.7 million to support the development of CCS/CCUS projects and hubs.
Mr Morrison said the projects will create around 2500 jobs, support Australian manufacturing, and drive down emissions.
“There is a strong appetite from business for the new emissions reduction technologies that they know will be needed to run their operations and keep employing Australians and grow jobs for the future,” Mr Morrison said.
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“World-leading projects like these are about cutting emissions and creating jobs.
“We want to make clean energy more affordable and reliable, while looking for ways our investments can get more people into work.”
While Mr Morrison’s sentiments towards emissions reduction have been largely agreed upon by his critics, there has been criticism over how ‘clean’ the announcement actually is.
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The Australia Institute’s Richie Merzian said the funding appeared to “once again use climate action to support fossil fuel companies”.
“The announcements are a poor showing ahead of the Biden summit, when so many countries are making substantial increases to their climate action and targets in the next 10 years,” he said.
“By 2030, the US will likely halve its emissions, the UK cut by over two-thirds and Australia is sitting on only 26 per cent cuts and more money for fossil fuels.”
These comments are largely in relation to carbon capture and storage technologies.