Green Hydrogen for City of Cockburn (Archived)

November 20th, 2023

Green Hydrogen for City of Cockburn

The City of Cockburn investigated the use of renewable hydrogen as a transport fuel for its waste collection and light vehicle fleets, as well as its use for embedded co-generation.

Main proponents:

City of Cockburn

Main end-use classification:

Hydrogen mobility, power


Archived – engagement/market sounding activities only

Estimated cost:

Feasibility study – AUD$325,000

Other involvement:


Production details:

Stage 1 – 1.25-megawatt (MW) electrolyser capable of producing 440 kilograms (kg) per day of hydrogen


Western Australia, Australia

Announced funding:

AUD$149,000 – Western Australian Government Renewable Hydrogen Fund (feasibility study)

AUD$176,000 – City of Cockburn

Project description

The City of Cockburn, a local Government area 22 kilometres south of Perth, undertook a feasibility study to examine the use of renewable hydrogen as a zero-emissions transport fuel for its waste collection and light vehicle fleets. An additional area of examination was the potential for provision of hydrogen for embedded co-generation at the Cockburn Aquatic and Recreation Centre and the new administration building.

The principal aims of the feasibility study were to determine the more detailed engineering and design requirements and associated economics of a dedicated, off-grid photovoltaic (PV) solar array to power a deionised water electrolysis plant at the Henderson Waste Recovery Park, with attention focussed on:

  • Generation of renewable hydrogen for refuelling the City of Cockburn’s waste collection and light vehicle fleets, and
  • Providing (renewable) hydrogen fuel for embedded fuel cell co-generation at the City of Cockburn’s Aquatic and Recreation Centre in order to reduce power purchased from the grid, in particular during peak power cost periods.

Secondary aims of the feasibility study were to:

  • Explore uninterrupted power systems for the resource recovery precinct and other City of Cockburn infrastructure, including fuel cells to replace diesel for fire suppression systems.
  • To determine the feasibility for utilising hydrogen at the City of Cockburn’s proposed new administration building adjacent to the Aquatic and Recreation Centre.
  • The project will knowledge share the outcomes to support regional and remote areas to assist in decision-making to invest in future off-grid hydrogen generation and associated hydrogen refuelling and/or hydrogen off-take projects.

Following a tender selection process, the feasibility study commenced in April 2021 with the final report completed in the latter part of 2021.

The feasibility study noted that the project was best delivered in Stages and its detailed analysis was focussed on Stage 1 – hydrogen refuelling of the City of Cockburn’s refuse collection vehicle fleet.   Further use of hydrogen use in the City’s light vehicle fleet and as embedded co-generation at the Aquatic and Recreation Centre was proposed as (expansion) Stages 2 and 3 respectively but not examined in depth.

Key Stage 1 design features included:

  • 1.2 MW solar field
  • 1.25 MW electrolyser capable of producing 440 kg per day of hydrogen
  • 1,000 kg (or two days’ production) of hydrogen storage
  • Capital cost of approximately AUD$24.5 million

The study notes that the engineering work performed confirms that there are no technical barriers to developing projects of this kind in Australia.

While the feasibility study is completed, the City of Cockburn has ongoing engagement activities with potential suppliers of green hydrogen, will be developing a fleet transition plan which will help identify a path to transition to electric and hydrogen powered vehicles, and is further investigating options for hydrogen powered side lift waste trucks. While engagement and market sounding activities continue, the project does not have funding commitments to progress its implementation in the near term.


January 2020: The feasibility study for this project is one of seven feasibility studies to which funds were allocated in January 2020 by the Western Australian government under its Renewable Hydrogen Fund.


Reviewed: November 2023