Feasibility study for green hydrogen hub, giant battery at Collie gets funding

The Western Australian government has announced that Sunshot Energy will be awarded “up to $1 million” through the Collie Futures Industry Development Fund to begin a feasibility study into a new green energy hub.

Sunshot, a consultancy chaired by economist Ross Garnaut, will undertake the first stage of a study into a proposed Collie Battery and Hydrogen Industrial Hub Project.

This would examine the case for a renewable-powered hydrogen electrolyser and a “600 to 800-megawatt hour battery… around four times the size of Tesla’s big batteryin Hornsdale, South Australia (pictured) to help deliver renewable energy to industrial users in the region, according to a statement from the WA government on Friday.

It makes sense for Collie, which is at the heart of the South-West energy system, to become a renewable energy industrial hub as we transition away from the coal industry,” said regional development minister Alannah MacTiernan.

“This project will provide a firm basis to progress a renewable energy hub in Collie.”

The release also cited the potential to manufacture green ammonia and urea, as well as green aluminium.

The Collie Futures Industry Development Fund provides grants under up to $2 million in matched funding for diversification projects under the Collie Futures Industry Development Fund, and up to $100,000 through the Collie Futures Small Grants Program.

The WA government believes a successful economic case for the project could mean as much as $730 million invested, 500 construction and 400 ongoing jobs, as well as lower-cost energy for businesses in the region and the encouragement of an “expansion of manufacturing and minerals processing.”

Sunshot was established in 2020 to implement the vision expressed in Superpower, Garnaut’s book on Australia’s potential to use its renewable energy resources to benefit its industries.

Picture: hornsdalepowerreserve.com.au

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