WA Government: New commitment of $5.5 Million Hydrogen Hub

Western Australian government committed to the land and additional state funding totalling $5.5 million to accelerate the Mid West Hydrogen Hub development. The grant was announced at the Mid-West Major Projects conference in Geraldton.

“The McGowan Government is committing an additional $5.5 million to plan works and studies that will help fast-track the development of the hub”, Minister of the Hydrogen Industry Alannah MacTiernan said.

“Renewable hydrogen produced at Oakajee will not only be a boon for the Mid-West but also has the potential to become another world-class export from WA’s regional areas.”

The planning works and studies will be undertaken over the next 12-18 months by the Department of Jobs, Tourism, Science and Innovation which includes:

  • $3 million for Western Power to undertake a feasibility study on the electrical connection of the Oakajee SIA to the South West Interconnected System, working closely with Energy Policy WA;
  • $1.2 million for DevelopmentWA to undertake land planning works;
  • $600,000 to undertake cultural heritage works;
  • $500,000 to undertake a joint study with the Port of Rotterdam and Mid West Ports Authority, examining the export of hydrogen products from the region;
  • $400,000 to prepare project approval plans and undertake further feasibility studies on hydrogen demand initiatives and common user infrastructure for the hub; and
  • $300,000 for Water Corporation to undertake water supply studies.

The latest step for the land allocation in developing the greenfield or undeveloped site known as the Oakajee Strategic Industrial Area (SIA) into a globally competitive, multi-product renewable hydrogen industrial zone was granted by the State Government’s Industrial Lands Panel.

While important conditions negotiations with Development WA, the State’s central land development agency, are still ongoing, the Industrial Lands Panel has decided to give land to six bids from businesses interested in implementing hydrogen-related projects at Oakajee SIA.

oakajee hydrogen hub
Image: DevelopmentWA – Oakajee SIA overview

The six proponents are:

  • BP;
  • Fortescue Future Industries (FFI);
  • Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP);
  • Green LOHC;
  • Kinara Power; and
  • Blue Diamond Australia

Once operational, the Oakajee SIA will significantly increase investment, employment opportunities, and value production for WA and the Mid-West area.

“Oakajee is a prime example of the work being undertaken by the WA Government to activate SIAs across the State, stimulating activities that will help diversify our economy and create local jobs”, State Development, Jobs and Trade Minister Roger Cook said.

“The Oakajee SIA has received significant interest from major global hydrogen producers and has the potential to transform our economy and create more long-term jobs for Western Australians.

Lands Minister John Carey stated, “SIAs are a key tool to attract investment into WA and support emerging industries, building on WA’s existing strengths”.

“Our Government remains focused on supporting renewable energy industries that will help transform and future-proof our economy while creating skilled local jobs for the future.”

Geraldton MLA Lara Dalton said, “Thank you to Minister MacTiernan for believing in the potential of the Mid-West Hydrogen Hub to become a world-class exporter of renewable hydrogen; it is pleasing to see this transformative project take another step forward today.”

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About Oakajee SIA

The Oakajee SIA is situated 23 kilometres (km) north of Geraldton and 435 kilometres (km) north of Perth. The four main designated land uses are the 1,134-hectare heavy industrial centre, the 4,070-hectare buffer zone, the 1,000-hectare port, and the 196-hectare industrial support zones.

The Oakajee SIA has 4 key land uses 

  • Strategic industry core – 1134ha Buffer area – 4070ha
  • Buffer area – 4070ha – with potential for wind and solar power generation 
  • Future port/coastal area – 1000ha 
  • Industry support areas – 196ha
About Oakajee SIA
Source&Image: wa.gov.au

It is connected to Western Australia’s major road network and Geraldton Port via the North West Coastal Highway. It has planned service connections to the existing South West Interconnected System and the Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline. It has also been subject to detailed plans for an iron ore export port.

Completely owned and managed by the Western Australian Government, the vision for the Oakajee SIA is to be a sustainable, internationally competitive downstream processing industrial hub for major domestic and international markets.

Wind and solar potential

The Oakajee SIA’s renewable hydrogen potential is centred on its world-class and diurnally complementary wind and solar potential, which provides a consistently high renewable contribution to energy production capacity.

Global data sets 3 indicates the renewable resources at the Oakajee SIA are internationally competitive:

  • Wind speed: 7.50 to 8.75 m/s with a capacity factor of up to 50%, among the highest in the world
  • Global Horizontal Irradiation: 2000 – 2200 kWh/m2.

The Oakajee SIA buffer has the potential to generate up to 270 MW of wind energy or 1250 MW of solar photovoltaic renewable energy, according to the early order of magnitude assessments. As per estimations, this generation capacity may provide power at a levelised cost of fewer than 10 cents per kWh when supported by the gas company.

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