New legislation brings Queensland one step closer to carbon emissions goal

Gladstone Harbour looking south east. Image credit:

The Queensland government announced new legislation that aims to support the state’s booming renewable energy industry with $33 billion in economic activity as well as the creation of up to 10,000 jobs. 

Dubbed “The Gas Supply and Other Legislation (Hydrogen Industry Development) Amendment Bill 2023,” the new legislation will ensure Queensland has the legal framework in place to lead energy export partners, including Japan and South Korea, on their journey to net zero.

The bill will also establish Queensland’s ability to build, run, and monitor the safety of hydrogen initiatives and other renewable gas pipelines, transforming the sector into a hub of opportunity for jobs, the environment, and export potential.

To date, the government said Queensland is already leading the charge in the hydrogen sector, with more than 50 hydrogen projects underway across the state, including Stanwell Energy’s mega $12.4 billion Central Queensland Hydrogen Hub at Gladstone Port.

Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni pointed out that Queensland has unrivalled natural beauty, and that it is critical that the state lead the charge in decarbonising energy systems to guarantee that these treasures are preserved for future generations.

“This Bill is the key to unlocking the next frontier in Queensland’s energy exports – supporting up to 10,000 jobs and $33 billion in economic activity by 2040,” the minister said.

He added that it is vital that we do this correctly and that the appropriate framework is used to address the global climate concerns head-on while maintaining investor confidence in Queensland’s potential for hydrogen export.

Resources Minister Scott Stewart stated the proposed amendments to the Petroleum and Gas (Production and Safety) Act 2004 will position Queensland as a preferred destination for investors seeking to participate in the green hydrogen revolution.

“These reforms are one of the key actions in the Queensland Resources Industry Development Plan, a 30-year vision that will lay the foundations to responsibly unlock and realise the potential of our state’s resources into the future,” he said.

Minister Stewart added that North Queensland will be one of the major beneficiaries of these reforms, expressing his excitement about the great opportunities and good jobs that will be produced in the coming years.

The government stated the bill will extend Queensland’s existing pipeline safety standards to hydrogen and other renewable gases, including the necessity to build safety management systems and adhere to safety regulations.