Japan and Australia Launch Hydrogen Supply Chain in Efforts to Reduce Carbon Emissions in Asia

Hydrogen Supply Chain

(Credit: Canva Pro)

by | Mar 7, 2023

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Hydrogen Supply Chain

(Credit: Canva Pro)

On Saturday, Japan announced the launch of a hydrogen supply chain with Australia during the first ministerial meeting on reducing carbon emissions in the fast-growing Asian region. The meeting was held as part of the Asia Zero Emission Community (AZEC) framework proposed by Japan, and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida expressed his desire to expand hydrogen supply chain networks throughout the region through further cooperation with Asian nations. Hydrogen could be a valuable source of energy in making clean energy transitions, especially in a region prone to natural disasters.

A joint statement was issued after the meeting, with a total of 11 nations joining AZEC, stating that they recognize the key role of accelerating the energy transition in the Asian region to achieve the goals of the Paris international accord to tackle climate change. Japan is pitching new decarbonization technologies, such as using hydrogen and ammonia in thermal power generation and carbon dioxide capture, to secure a stable energy supply amid an energy crisis triggered by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The Japanese government believes that hydrogen and ammonia can play a significant role in cutting emissions from thermal power generation, the transportation sector, and industries that heavily depend on fossil fuels. The bilateral hydrogen supply chain will connect the Australian state of Victoria and Kawasaki, a city located southwest of Tokyo in the Keihin industrial zone.

The Asia zero-emission concept, announced by Kishida in January last year, aims to promote regional decarbonization and cooperation in advancing the transition to clean energy. All members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, except for Myanmar, have joined the framework. Chinese and Indian participation is not part of the initiative.

According to Japanese Economy, Trade, and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura, the initial focus of launching the AZEC framework is to help with energy transitions and the decarbonization of ASEAN. Japan is coordinating with countries like China, India, and South Korea through bilateral energy platforms toward net-zero emissions. Southeast Asia is a center of economic and emissions growth, and efforts to decarbonize will have a huge impact on regional and global progress on climate action.

Participants of the ministerial meeting also agreed to promote investments in decarbonization infrastructure, including power grids for clean energy and strengthening human resources capacity in the area. The East Asia and Pacific region account for a third of global greenhouse gas emissions and 60 percent of the world’s coal consumption, according to the World Bank, making it critical to global efforts to fight climate change.

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