Pilbara, WA

BP has announced it will take a 40.5 per cent equity stake in the Asian Renewable Energy Hub (AREH) north-east of Port Hedland, making it the majority shareholder for the project.

The Western Australian Government granted the project Lead Agency Status in 2018 and an exclusive licence to collect resource data, and has been working closely with Intercontinental Energy and BP to get the project to this stage.

AREH is expected to generate up to 26GW of combined wind and solar capacity and produce 1.6 million tonnes of green hydrogen or nine million tonnes of green ammonia each year. 

The project will play a key role in Western Australia’s energy transition.

Hydrogen Industry Minister, Alannah MacTiernan, said BP’s commitment to AREH is a significant vote of confidence for the next stage of development of the Western Australian renewable hydrogen industry.

“The project will transform the Pilbara, create thousands of jobs and be a major contributor to global efforts to decarbonise the economy, and provide low-cost energy to underpin downstream processing of our mineral wealth,” Ms MacTiernan said.

“A project of this scale will require new supply chain facilities for the manufacture and assembly of equipment for wind, solar and hydrogen generation, which will create new, local, high-value jobs.

“This announcement reinforces Western Australia’s credentials as a world-class investment destination for green energy generation, including the production of exportable commodities, like green hydrogen and ammonia and green steel.”

The provision of low-cost green energy to Pilbara communities and industry would create thousands of jobs and catalyse significant new manufacturing and mineral processing opportunities for Western Australia.

AREH will also contribute to the clean energy aspirations of neighbouring countries and key trading partners, and contribute towards energy security in the Asian region.

Cheap, clean energy can also support new and expanded industries, downstream mineral processing, and large-scale production of green hydrogen and ammonia products for domestic and export markets.

BP Executive Vice President of Gas and Low Carbon Energy, Anja-Isabel Dotzenrath, said AREH is set to be one of the largest renewable and green hydrogen energy hubs in the world and can make a significant contribution to Australia and the wider Asia Pacific region’s energy transition. 

“It truly reflects what integrated energy is – combining solar and onshore wind power with hydrogen production and using it to help transform sectors and regions,” Ms Dotzenrath said.

“It also reflects our belief that Australia has the potential to be a powerhouse in the global energy transition, benefitting from both its existing infrastructure and abundant renewable energy resources.

“We believe AREH can be a cornerstone project for us in helping our local and global customers and partners in meeting their net zero and energy commitments. 

“It will also serve as a long-term clean energy security contributor in the Asia Pacific, helping countries such as South Korea and Japan to decarbonise.”

Under the terms of agreement, BP will assume operatorship from 1 July 2022, subject to approvals.

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