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Australia’s first renewable hydrogen microgrid powers up WA: Johnston, MacTiernan

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The Hon. Bill Johnston, Minister for Energy (WA), The Hon. Alannah MacTiernan, Minister for Hydrogen Industry (WA), Joint Media Release, 14 November 2022

Australia’s first remote renewable hydrogen microgrid has launched in Denham in Western Australia’s Gascoyne region. 

Energy Minister Bill Johnston and Hydrogen Industry Minister Alannah MacTiernan were present last Friday to celebrate first hydrogen being produced at the $9.3 million Denham Hydrogen Demonstration Plant.

Once fully operational in early 2023, the plant is expected to be able to power the average demands of 100 households or 20 per cent of Denham’s residents and businesses.

It will also offset 140,000 litres of diesel annually and provide a decarbonisation pathway for future energy systems.

The plant includes a 704-kilowatt (kW) solar farm, 348kW hydrogen electrolyser, and a 100kW fuel cell providing an innovative alternative to diesel generators.

The WA Government has provided $5.7 million towards the project, with $1 million through the Renewable Hydrogen Fund.

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency has provided $2.6 million of funding through its Advancing Renewables Program.

The project is being delivered by Horizon Power and Hybrid Systems Australia.

Comments attributed to Energy Minister Bill Johnston:

“Congratulations to Horizon Power and Hybrid Systems Australia for successfully delivering the first remote microgrid in Australia to be powered by renewable hydrogen.

“The Denham Hydrogen Demonstration Plant is leading the energy transition to new technologies, as we work towards the McGowan Government’s commitment to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

“The demonstration in Denham is extending knowledge of hydrogen technology and systems in practice and considers how this technology can be used in other remote power systems.”

Comments attributed to Hydrogen Industry Minister Alannah MacTiernan:

“The Denham Hydrogen Demonstration Plant here in Shark Bay demonstrates the WA Government’s drive to ensure Western Australia reaches its potential as a renewable hydrogen powerhouse.

“Once fully operational the plant will show how renewable hydrogen can be used to replace diesel and other fossil fuels to propel WA to net zero emissions by 2050.

“This project is the first step towards rolling out renewable hydrogen domestically – and has helped us build critical skills and understanding to move us along as a producer and user of renewable hydrogen.”

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