FMG founder Andrew Forrest with QLD MP Annastacia Palaszczuk. Source: Twitter
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  • Fortescue Metals’ (FMG) subsidiary Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) announces it will build a new hydrogen plant in Queensland as part of a series of Global Green Energy Manufacturing (GEM) projects.
  • The project is part of FMG’s plans for carbon neutrality by 2030
  • FMG’s Climate Change report says the FFI will create 15 million tonnes of green hydrogen annually by 2030
  • The hydrogen plant will cost $115 million in its first stage but will contribute to generating thousands of jobs while aiming to double global production of hydrogen by 2023

Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) has announced a new hydrogen plant in Queensland as part of a series of Global Green Energy Manufacturing (GEM) projects.

FFI is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fortescue Metals Group (FMG). The project is part of Fortescue’s industry goal of carbon neutrality by 2030.

The hydrogen plant will cost $115 million in its first stage but will contribute to creating thousands of jobs while aiming to double the global production of hydrogen by 2023.

The plant’s first batch of clean energy is scheduled for early 2023.

FMG’s facility will be erected in Aldoga, to the west of Gladstone.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk welcomed the project.

“Now is the time for Queensland to position itself as a significant hydrogen trading partner with our international neighbours,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

Hidden hydrogen treasure

According to the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), hydrogen can be used as a replacement for transport fuel, heating systems or as a way to store electricity.

The energy is harnessed through electrolysers that split water into atoms to produce oxygen, hydrogen and heat. The process of splitting oxygen and hydrogen creates green energy with zero emissions.

ARENA predicted global Australian hydrogen demands could be valued at more than $10 billion each year after 2040. The Australian Government’s National Hydrogen Strategy is aiming for commercial hydrogen exports to commence by 2030.

FMG cleans up

According to Fortescue chairman Andrew Forrest, greener iron ore mining could lead to domestic green steel manufacturing, with the potential to create more jobs than the entire coal industry.

FMG’s Climate Change Report said FFI would create 15 million tonnes of green hydrogen annually by 2030.

FMG outlined the current goal of 24 per cent renewable power generation and batteries for mine sites, the 2023 goal of 26 per cent battery and hydrogen-powered haul trucks and the 2027 goal of 36 per cent hydrogen-powered heavy mining equipment.

“We will not allow the world to keep on cooking — we will not allow our children to inherit a much-less stable environment,” Dr Forrest said.

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