"We can make the cheapest hydrogen with the highest efficiency and the lowest energy consumption."
In 2021-2022 federal budget, Australian government committed A$1.2 billion over 10 years to encourage investment in regional hydrogen hubs, carbon capture and storage technologies.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has also highlighted Australia's hydrogen energy advantages at earlier international climate conferences.
Professor Chuan Zhao from UNSW Science’s School of Chemistry is a leading scientist in the field of green hydrogen energy production, storage and applications.
Professor Zhao believes that the federal budget funding for new green energy, carbon capture and sustainable energy technologies is a good start.
However, he believes the federal budget could invest more in these areas, given the urgency and scale of global climate change and the fact that Australia's per capita carbon emissions are at a relatively high level in the world.
In terms of research on green hydrogen production, Professor Zhao believes that Australia is leading the world because Australia has the leading solar energy research and low-cost catalysts for hydrogen production via water electrolysis.
He told SBS Chinese: "Australia's solar energy research is very impressive in the world. So we have the best solar cells. Also, we have the best catalysts for water electrolysis. So, these two together, we can make the cheapest hydrogen with the highest efficiency and the lowest energy consumption."
Professor Chuan Zhao believes that it is a very wise choice for Australia to promote hydrogen energy now.
He said: "Australia is really blessed in the [hydrogen energy] field, it has a lot of resources in addition to being geographically close to markets such as East Asia, which has the fastest growing economy and the greatest energy demand ...... [Australia] itself is also a maritime country and geographically very close [to lucrative markets], so it would be a bit of a 'waste' not to do this."
Please view the detailed report in Chinese.