Applications are open for $20 million in grants from the Victorian and NSW governments to encourage investment on the east coast’s busiest freight route, aiming to support a minimum of four refuelling stations and approximately 25 hydrogen-powered trucks.
Each state is contributing $10 million in funding to the program, which is part of a tri-state agreement announced in March to build an east coast refuelling network for heavy transport, focussing on the Hume, Pacific and Newell Highways.
“This initiative aims to show the potential of renewable hydrogen for heavy vehicles with the goal of transitioning the freight sector to zero emissions energy sources,” said NSW energy minister Matt Kean in a joint statement with Victorian environment minister Lily D’Ambrosio on Monday.
“Australia’s busiest corridor is the perfect place to kickstart the transition to a zero-emission freight sector,” added D-Ambrosio.
According to the statement, hydrogen possessed “strong potential to be cost competitive with diesel for trucks”.
“What we’re looking for is strong industry collaboration between refuelling station operators, fleet operators, truck manufacturers, major freight customers, and other entities which will be vital to the success of the initiative,” added Keen.
Grant applications are open until October 21.
Picture: Image credit Paul Jeffers
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