Hydrogen energyProject Australian Hydrogen Centre
This report documents a detailed study by the Australian Hydrogen Centre into the technical and commercial feasibility of producing enough green hydrogen to replace 10% of South Australia’s natural gas consumption and distribute it using the existing natural gas networks. It is one of a series of seven such studies, each focused on a particular scenario in terms of geographical coverage and the proportion of natural gas consumption replaced.
Residential gas customers in South Australia make up around 58% of households in the state and typically use 17 GJ of natural gas each year. Households connected to the network generally use gas for cooking and hot water, with some households also using gas for heating given the relatively cool climate in South Australia.
Industry is the highest consumer of natural gas in South Australia, owing to the significant presence of diverse industries that are a key driver of the South Australian economy. As shown in Table 1, there are 112 industrial customers connected to the South Australian gas distribution network in 2020. These customers represent 0.02% of South Australian connections yet account for approximately 46% of total gas delivered through the network. Commercial businesses (comprising offices, hospitals, restaurants, hotels, pools, schools, tertiary education buildings and public buildings) account for 16% of demand and typically use natural gas for cooking, heating, and hot water.
The AHC carried out a desktop analysis study to understand the suitability of South Australian major gas users to accept 10% or 100% hydrogen, with more detailed analysis provided in the AHC’s 100% Hydrogen Distribution Networks Study – South Australia.
South Australia experiences demand peaks with a natural gas load differential of 2:1 between winter and summer, driven primarily by increased need for residential and commercial heat in colder periods of the year. This is evident in Figure 2 below in the peaks in demand in July and August 2016, 2017, and 2018