Clean Energy RD&D investments

Australia is pleased to support Mission Innovation into its next phase with a renewed commitment to continue to invest in clean energy RD&D. Australia’s investments are set to increase over the next decade as a result of new policy and funding announced in 2020-21 and 2021-22. This funding will go towards RD&D for low-emissions technologies from 2021 to 2031. Our aim is to use Government funding to leverage increased funding from private sector, so that total RD&D spending on low emissions technologies in Australia is far greater.

In 2020 Australia developed the Technology Investment Roadmap (the Roadmap)[1] as an enduring framework with a strategic and system-wide view for the investment and deployment of low emissions technologies in the short, medium and long term.

  • The Roadmap will guide the deployment of around $20 billion of Government investment between now and 2030, including through the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA), Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), the Climate Solutions Fund and the Clean Energy Regulator.
  • The Roadmap aims to leverage $3-5 of co-financing for every $1 invested by the Government, including from the private sector, state governments, research institutions and other publicly funded bodies. This will drive an estimated $50-100 million of additional investment in low emission technologies in the decade to 2030.

In 2020, the Government announced a $1.9 billion investment package in future technologies. Specifically the Government is supporting the next generation of energy technologies with an extra $1.62 billion for the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)[2] to invest over ten years from 2021-22 to 2031-32, as well as expanding the focus of ARENA and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) to back new technologies that will cut emissions in industry, transport, manufacturing and areas outside of Mission Innovation focus such as agriculture. Investments through ARENA will target the most prospective RD&D challenges and opportunities.

The technology investment funding also includes grants and funding for hydrogen industry development including hydrogen hubs and research collaborations, electric vehicle refuelling infrastructure, carbon capture projects, and a Technology Co-Investment Fund for a range of low-emissions technology advancements. This builds on over half a billion dollars in funding support already committed by the Australian Government to support hydrogen industry growth.

In April 2021, the government announced $565.8 million to support international low emissions technology partnerships and initiatives. This fund will support research and demonstration projects that drive down the costs of low emissions technologies, and facilitate deployment and export of low emissions technologies and energy. Co‑funding from partner countries and the private sector will be sought.

A further $539.2 million has been dedicated for CCS/CCUS and hydrogen projects. $275.5 million to support the development of 4 additional clean hydrogen hubs in regional Australia, trial a Guarantee of Origin/hydrogen certification scheme, and review the enabling environments. $263.7 million will support the development of CCS/CCUS projects and hubs.

Together these initiatives and funding will see Australia meet its commitments and demonstrate an increase in total investment towards clean energy RD&D across public and private entities.