At last a national hydrogen strategy – but misdirected

Comment by Peter Roberts The federal coalition’s obsession with protecting an industry which is clearly on the way out – coal mining – shone through at a meeting of state and federal energy ministers held last week. The states and Commonwealth endorsed Australia’s National Hydrogen Strategy which will co-ordinate national efforts to move towards clean…

Government funded training effort appears to rise, but is it real

Analysis by Peter Roberts The number of students in government-funded training in Australian has shown a rare rise, after years of bad news for vocational training in Australia. A report by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) shows a rise in government-funded students this year. However the research organisation warns that the rise…

Defence radar order shows things really have changed for industry

Analysis by Peter Roberts Defence has signed a multi-million dollar contract to buy new land-based army radars that shows just how much the fortunes of indigenous defence industry really have changed in the past six years. Canberra-based CEA Technologies won a hard-fought battle to win a $137 million contract to supply the army with a…

Steel breakthrough – thyssenkrupp makes steel using hydrogen

By Peter Roberts Steelmaking has always been the one area where even in the most carbon constrained industrial future imaginable, the world might just need to use Australian coking coal. But now, thanks to an industrial breakthrough of truly massive proportions, the world may be left with very few critically important uses for coal. German…

Smaller manufacturers and the big challenge of digitalisation

It’s been said that Australia’s population of enterprises has a “missing middle.”    Within manufacturing, there is certainly a heavy weighting towards the smaller end of town. A count published in the Australian Industry Group’s Australian Manufacturing in 2019 report found that of 47,530 employing companies, 87 per cent were between 1 and 19 employees…