Greek developer buys stake in NSW green hydrogen project targeting Hume Highway haulage


Mytilineos has invested an undisclosed amount to purchase a 15% stake in Clara Energy’s Rosedale Green Hydrogen Project in New South Wales. Mytilineos says its investment will support the commencement of Stage 1 of the project to build a hydrogen generation facility exclusively powered by solar and targeting long haul trucks crossing one of the Australia’s busiest highways, the Hume Highway corridor.

Clara Energy’s final project plan for Rosedale is to develop a 800 MW solar farm and 560 MW hydrogen plant near Gundagai, which sits between Melbourne and Sydney on the Hume Highway.

The proposed facility aims to be able to produce enough green hydrogen to fuel 800 trucks each day, though a precise figure in tonnes has not been provided.

At Stage 1, the targeted solar capacity of the project is 250 MW while the hydrogen generation facility, Mytilineos said, “will produce enough hydrogen to be used by 200 trucks.”

Artists impression of a PepsiCo branded hydrogen Prime Mover truck.

Image: Pure Hydrogen

It isn’t clear why the project is named the ‘Rosedale’ Green Hydrogen project since Clara Energy has previously been citing the town of Tarcutta for its project, with Mytilineos referring to Gundagai. Both Tarcutta and Gundagai are close to one another, but neither are close to Rosedales in New South Wales or Victoria. There is a Rosedale road in Gundagai however, which may be on the proposed site.

Mytilineos’ Australian portfolio of mostly solar assets now totals 400 MW, according to the company, which has repeated described Australia as a “key market” for its global strategy. Mytilineos said in January that its worldwide pipeline of solar and energy storage projects at various stages of development exceeds 4 GW.

The Rosedale Green Hydrogen project appears to be Mytilineos’ first foray into green hydrogen in Australia. Mytilineos’ Chief Executive Director of its energy branch, Ioannis Kalafatas, said of the Rosedale project: “We hope that this project in Australia will not be the only one and that we will soon have new projects.”

The project is seeking to cater to heavy haulage trucks – a sector which has recently seen some traction when it comes to hydrogen. Pepsi recently started trialling a hydrogen truck at one of its Brisbane manufacturing facilities. The Royal Automobile Club of Victoria, RACV, has also formed a partnership with a hydrogen truck maker and plans to soon bring a number of hydrogen fuel cell trucks into operations.

The launch of Hyzon’s hydrogen-powered trucks at its facility in southeast Melbourne in March 2023.

Image: Florence Lindhaus / LinkedIn

While hydrogen-powered vehicles look somewhat unlikely to break into the passenger car market – which is already dominated by electric vehicles – heavy haulage industries appear to have more promise. Hydrogen can offer these sectors rapid refuelling times and longer driving ranges.

Clara Energy’s Hume Highway hydrogen corridor

The Rosedale Green Hydrogen project is being developed by Clara Energy. Clara in 2022 announced a partnership with Hydrogen Fuels Australia to build a green hydrogen distribution network along the Hume Highway corridor, worth $600 million (USD 396 million).

Under that agreement, Clara Energy is set to develop the green hydrogen production capacity, while Hydrogen Fuels Australia acts as distributor and station operator.

While it isn’t precisely said in the recent Mytilineos announcement, it appears the Rosedale Green Hydrogen project falls into the production side of this broader plan.

“We know the Hume is the busiest truck route in Australia and once the major logistics companies know there will be guaranteed supply of hydrogen at a commercially viable price, it will provide even greater confidence to accelerate the transition of their fleets,” Clara CEO Nick Cleary said at the time.

Clara is aiming to open the first hydrogen refuelling station around the Sydney–Melbourne midpoint in 2025, it said at the time. Under the partnership with Hydrogen Fuels Australia, it plans to develop another four hydrogen refuelling stations between Victoria and Sydney.

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