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Victoria joins renewable hydrogen certification scheme

Out-Law News | 19 May 2021 | 2:51 am | 2 min. read

The government of Victoria in Australia has joined a zero carbon certification scheme.

The Victorian government and the Smart Energy Council will work together in identifying, promoting and certifying renewable hydrogen, ammonia and metals projects in that state.

The Zero Carbon Certification Scheme is a renewable hydrogen certification that was launched in December by the Smart Energy Council. The scheme will certify that renewable hydrogen, green ammonia and green metals have been produced from renewable sources and will provide an embedded carbon rating through the issue of a Guarantee of Origin certificate. It aims to boost the uptake and distribution of renewable hydrogen, green ammonia and green metals in Australia and around the world by providing information to purchasers on the origin of products and how they are made.

The scheme is planned to be based on the CertifHy scheme in Europe, with the German Energy Agency (DENA) and the Australian National University acting as advisers to the scheme, and the Green Hydrogen Catapult joined the scheme as a partner initiative.

Energy expert George Varma at Pinsent Masons, the law firm behind Out-Law, said: "The development of the Zero Carbon Certification Scheme will allow consumers to understand where they are spending their money and if the companies are either investing in or purchasing from really are working towards a net zero energy future.  This will not only potentially assist the domestic demand for hydrogen, it will assist with the hydrogen export market as the demand for hydrogen and products produced using green energy as an alternative way of exporting green energy."

"Guarantee of Origin certificates will provide confidence to the market about the products being purchased and will also allow companies to demonstrate the value they are adding to the community by acting in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way. It is highly likely people will be willing to pay slightly premium for products which are produced using green energy, as opposed to traditional fossil fuels, " he said.

“The growth of certificate of origin schemes are increasing across countries, which will likely lead to the development of a global standard which will be accepted across all countries. This will provide a level playing field for the export of products being produced using green energy and will accelerate the energy transition journey many companies have embarked upon,” said Varma.

According to Victoria’s energy environment and climate minister Lily D’Ambrosio, the scheme is “exactly what is needed to accelerate renewable hydrogen in Australia”.

The other nine initial founding partners of the scheme are the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) government, Ammonia Energy Association, COP26 High Level Champions for Climate Action, CWP Global, Energy Web, Power Ledger, Star Scientific, Evoenergy1 and the ACT Renewables Hub.

The Green Hydrogen Catapult is a global coalition of seven leading renewable hydrogen companies seeking to speed up the scale and production of green hydrogen by 50 times over the next six years.