Hunter industry groups have welcomed the State Government's hydrogen strategy but warned there is no time to lose if the region is to fulfil its potential as a national clean energy powerhouse.
The strategy's centrepiece is $3 billion worth of incentives designed to attract $80 billion in new hydrogen infrastructure to the state.
Hunter Jobs Alliance coordinator Warrick Jordan urged the government to move quickly to develop clean manufacturing precincts and commercial scale projects to back up the strategy.
"NSW has become a nation leader in renewable energy, but if hydrogen was like the Newcastle 500, to date you'd say NSW has been caught between pit lane and the media tent while the rest of Australia were revving their engines at the starting line. Queensland and WA in particular have moved rapidly to build infrastructure, start production and get access to the huge contracts being developed by Asian trading partners. Now, with the welcome announcement of this strategy, and the Newcastle and Illawarra hubs kicking off, we can get ourselves right in the game."
The region was selected as the only NSW hub site due to the high level of existing interest from industry stakeholders, its skills and research capabilities, infrastructure and resources.