Stanwell signs green hydrogen deal with Acciona

Artist render of the Stanwell green hydrogen facility near Gladstone (Acciona)
Image: Stanwell

Queensland state-owned utility Stanwell has signed an agreement with Spanish renewable energy developer Acciona to secure electricity supply from renewable sources for its 3,000MW hydrogen electrolysis facility west of Gladstone in Central Queensland, ArgusMedia reports.

Acciona will supply electricity from the Aldoga solar PV project with output to start in December 2025.

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Stanwell is developing the hydrogen project with a group of Japanese firms, including energy supplier Iwatani, engineering firm Kawasaki Heavy Industries, utility Kansai Electric Power, trading house Marubeni, and Australian energy infrastructure firm APA Group. The project is intended to produce green hydrogen for export to Japan.

The agreement between Stanwell and Acciona ensures that the hydrogen will be produced from renewable sources, Stanwell said. The Aldoga solar PV farm is scheduled to start construction in September 2023, Acciona said. Prior to the agreement with Stanwell, Acciona had planned the first stage of Aldoga to have a capacity of 315MW and the firm has a planning approval of up to 600MW, said Acciona, adding that the second stage of Aldoga would supply a green hydrogen project.

The proposed hydrogen project will be part of a hydrogen industry hub that the Queensland government is promoting for Gladstone, which has one of the state’s largest ports for the shipment of LNG, as well as coking and thermal coal. The hydrogen cluster at Gladstone is known as the Central Queensland Hydrogen project.

Last month, Fortescue Future Industries received approval from the Queensland state government to build a hydrogen electrolyser production plant at Gladstone. The plant will have the production capacity to build 2,000MW of electrolysers when it comes online in 2023.

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Fellow Queensland state-controlled utility CS Energy and its joint venture partner, Japanese engineering firm IHI, also plan to develop a green hydrogen pilot plant at Gladstone, with a capacity of 50,000kg per year from 2023. The hydrogen is to be produced from solar PV and batteries.

Gladstone is also one of seven national hydrogen hubs the Australian federal government is planning to provide funding for through its hydrogen policy.

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