The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) was established by the Australian Government in 2012 to improve the competitiveness of renewable energy technologies and increase the supply of renewable energy.

ARENA’s Investment Plan 2022 includes the commercialisation of clean hydrogen as one of four strategic priorities, and similarly in ARENA’s General Funding Strategy for the period 2022-23 to 2024-25.

ARENA has supported a large number of hydrogen-related activities, including:

  • Under its Renewable Hydrogen Deployment Funding Round, in May 2021, ARENA announced conditional funding of around AUD$103 million for three projects, with electrolyser capacity of 10 megawatts (MW) for each project. As of end June 2023, two of these projects has progressed to the construction stage (conditional funding of AUD$84 million) and one project is not progressing and not accessing ARENA funds (of AUD$28.7 million).
  • Approximately AUD$130 million awarded to 22 feasibility studies, pilot and demonstration projects in the period 2018-2023.
  • Approximately AUD$22 million awarded (in September 2018) to 16 research projects covering the full hydrogen value chain.
  • Up to AUD$25 million announced in April 2023 through a Hydrogen R&D Funding Round to support research and development activities in renewable hydrogen production, storage and distribution.
  • Reports covering Australia’s hydrogen export potential, development of tools to assess benefits/costs of regional communities switching to hydrogen, and an examination of public perception of hydrogen energy in Australia.

In June 2021, the Australian and German Governments established the German-Australian Hydrogen Innovation and Technology Incubator (HyGATE) to support real-world pilot, trial, demonstration and research projects along the hydrogen supply chain. Australia and Germany have respectively committed up to AUD$50 million and €50 million to establish HyGATE. ARENA is administering the Australian portion of the initiative. In January 2023, ARENA announced conditional funding of up to AUD$50 million and €40 million awarded by Australia and Germany across four projects as part of the HyGATE initiative.

ARENA and the Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water (DCCEEW) will be developing the design of AUD$2 billion Hydrogen HeadStart Program announced in the (May 2023) 2023-24 Federal Budget.

ARENA-funded hydrogen projects can be accessed via the ARENA Projects webpage (by choosing ‘Hydrogen energy’ in the Category filter) or via the ARENA News webpage.

The ARENA Knowledge Bank contains many reports arising from ARENA-funded hydrogen energy activities (as above, by choosing ‘Hydrogen energy’ in the Category filter). These reports cover a wide range of project and research activities, including technical and economic evaluations, permitting and regulatory matters, and community engagement and perception aspects.

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Updated:  July 2023