The Queensland Government has revealed a new cabinet lineup which includes establishing a Minister for Hydrogen in an Australian first.
Mick de Brenni has been appointed as Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen and Minister for Public Works and Procurement.
Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, said she expected her ministers to focus squarely on Queensland’s economic recovery and providing the services that all Queenslanders – including seniors and those in regional Queensland – need.
“Queenslanders expect us to get on with implementing our Economic Recovery Plan,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“They expect the roads, schools and hospitals we need and the jobs that go with building them.
“It is our job to get on with the job and that’s exactly what we will do.”
The Australian Hydrogen Council CEO, Dr Fiona Simon, welcomed the Queensland Government’s announcement about its Minister for Hydrogen.
“I congratulate and welcome the Premier of Queensland’s announcement about this Australian first – creating a Minister for Hydrogen in her new cabinet,” Dr Simon said.
“This is the right time to recognise hydrogen with a portfolio in its own right.
“By creating a hydrogen portfolio, the Queensland Government recognises hydrogen as an important new industry in the economic recovery, and a great opportunity for Queensland.
“This portfolio is also well-positioned with Minister de Brenni’s other portfolios of energy, renewables, and public works and procurement. These are complementary portfolios for realising Queensland’s hydrogen objectives.
“Even before the announcement, Queensland has one of the more mature approaches to the hydrogen industry including a Queensland Hydrogen Industry Strategy, development fund, prospectus, investor toolkit and guidance for local governments on hydrogen developments.
“The government also allocated $145 million for renewable energy zones with ambitions to develop hydrogen hubs.
“I’m sure Mick de Brenni will make an excellent Minister for Hydrogen and I look forward to working with him as we turbocharge the Queensland hydrogen industry over the coming year.”
The Australian Energy Council (AEC) also congratulated Mr de Brenni on his appointment.
The AEC’s Chief Executive, Sarah McNamara, said, “Mick de Brenni brings strong ministerial experience to his new responsibilities.
“He takes on the role at an exciting and critical juncture as Queensland continues to implement its energy strategy and manage the short and longer-term challenges that the ongoing transformation of the National Electricity Market presents.
“The elevation of hydrogen in the energy portfolio is welcome and underscores the increasing importance of new energy technologies in the ongoing transition of the sector.
“On behalf of our members, I would like to wish the minister every success in his new role. We look forward to working with him and the Queensland Government on energy policy.”