The Queensland Government has launched a landmark dedicated workforce development plan for the hydrogen industry, the first of its kind in Australia.

Speaking at the Australian Clean Energy Summit in Sydney on Wednesday, 20 July, Queensland Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer launched the Hydrogen Industry Workforce Development Roadmap 2022-2032 that aims to build a pipeline of skilled, “hydrogen-ready” workers.

The state’s Gateway to Industry Skills Program will be broadened to incorporate hydrogen, enabling 30 schools and up to 2000 students to participate in the emerging industry.

“This roadmap is the first dedicated workforce development plan for the hydrogen industry,” said Farmer.

“It sets a path to a strong and adaptable workforce for a safe and thriving Queensland hydrogen industry.

“The Sunshine State is aiming to fast-track the development of the industry. We’re already accelerating towards our ambitious target of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030, with a vision to be at the forefront of renewable hydrogen production.

“Affordable, clean and secure energy has the potential to deliver thousands of jobs and drive the state’s economic growth, and we will ensure we maximise workforce opportunities in regional communities across Queensland.”

Farmer said the roadmap was formulated with key insights from industry heavyweights and training providers to understand future workforce requirements as the hydrogen industry grows.

“To deliver this groundbreaking roadmap, the government worked closely with industry stakeholders, including multinational and domestic hydrogen proponents, public and private skills and training providers and professional bodies, regional economic groups and hydrogen clusters, unions and universities,” she said.

“The roadmap recognises the importance of having flexible skills and training options to respond when and where new skills needs emerge, tailored responses for local workforces, and attraction and retention strategies.”

As part of the roadmap announcement, $20 million has been allocated for stage two of the Queensland Apprenticeships Centre at Beenleigh, in southeast Brisbane, which will include a Hydrogen Training Centre of Excellence for apprentices to work safely with hydrogen.

The Queensland Government has previously committed to $15 million investment in emerging and evolving industries, including hydrogen, and Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Michael de Brenni said the state’s hydrogen industry can maximise growing demand for large-scale domestic projects and export opportunities.

“We’re accelerating the development of Queensland-made hydrogen, creating more jobs in more industries, especially in regional Queensland,” he said.

“The state’s wealth of renewable resources, export infrastructure and its skilled workforce means Queensland is well placed to build an internationally leading hydrogen industry.

“We have a bold vision for the state’s future and we’re backing Queenslanders to be front and centre of the clean energy transformation.”