Proposed $15bn green hydrogen project in NT to support 1000 jobs

Monica Gameng   |   December 13, 2021
Northern Territory landscape (cr: World Travel Guide)

Central Australia is also set to welcome a large-scale hydrogen project as the Northern Territory Government grant Major Project Status to an off-grid hydrogen development by Aqua Aerem. 

Estimated to be valued at $15 billion, the Desert Bloom Hydrogen project is going to be a staged commercial-scale green hydrogen operation that is expected to produce about 410,000 tonnes of hydrogen annually for domestic as well as international export markets. 

“Being the comeback capital means creating more jobs in more places in the Territory – and Desert Bloom now marks the Territory’s first Hydrogen Major Project. 

“We are supporting a world-leading renewable hydrogen project, in technology that captures water from the atmosphere in arid environments. 

“With one of the best solar resources in the world – and the development of projects like Desert Bloom – the Territory will play a leading role in emerging renewable hydrogen market,” Chief Minister Michael Gunner said. 

Sanguine Impact Investment is backing this significant development with a $1 billion funding commitment to deliver the initial stages of the project. The company will also be providing the capital to build the entire project. 

Subject to the project’s rollout sequence, over 1,000 full-time jobs are expected to be created at peak construction period both in Darwin and on site at several locations. In addition, about 120 full-time jobs are estimated to be required to operate and maintain the project. 

Approximately 100 full-time construction jobs are going to be required to deliver the first stage of works and 6 jobs for ongoing operations. 

“The Territory Labor Government supports hydrogen technology in the Territory. With its potential to expand to a $15 billion project, Desert Bloom will further champion renewable hydrogen investment as part of the Territory’s transition to renewables – this is laid out in our Hydrogen Masterplan. 

“As renewable hydrogen technologies are continuously evolving, having projects like this in the Territory is further cementing the Territory as a renewables super hub, while also creating long term jobs in the process,” Minister for Renewables and Energy Eva Lawler said. 

Following the announcement of Major Project Status, the Northern Territory Government will the project team to develop plans for the project, including the identification of land in Central Australia that would be suitable to harness solar energy as well as ensuring the project adheres to standard best practice regulatory processes and approvals. 

The Desert Bloom Hydrogen project supports the State Government’s Northern Territory Hydrogen Masterplan which highlights the Territory’s competitive advantages and how it can leverage these advantages to become the country’s centre of hydrogen technology research, production as well as use. 

“Desert Bloom Hydrogen presents an exciting opportunity to accelerate the Territory’s hydrogen industry – production, supply and service, and research and training. 

“The provision of renewable power to our regional industries including mining and agribusinesses, will provide a competitive advantage in a world that is increasingly focused on sustainable supply chains,” Major Project Commissioner Jason Schoolmeester said. 

Desert Bloom Hydrogen will be utilising a proven technology to produce green hydrogen at a commercial scale without impacting its water resources. This process will help reduce capital and operating costs related to the production of green hydrogen. 

“This proven technology that is ready to produce green hydrogen at commercial scale by 2023 with no impact on our water supplies. Desert Bloom will produce 410 metric tonnes of green hydrogen annually for export and domestic use when at full scale. 

“The NT is the perfect place for this project, with the best solar conditions in the world, existing infrastructure that can be repurposed for hydrogen, and a strategic location close to the big Asian demand centres. On top of that, the NT Government has a big vision for a hydrogen-powered jobs boom that we are proud to be part of,” Aqua Aerem CEO Gerard Reiter said. 

Source: Northern Territory Government Newsroom; Aqua Aerem (1, 2); Renew Economy 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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