UNSW alumna the Hon. Penny Sharpe MLC, Minister for Climate Change, Minister for Energy, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Heritage chose UNSW Sydney for the launch of the NSW Decarbonisation Innovation 2023 Study on 7 November.
The Study – conducted by the Office of the NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer – outlines the NSW Government’s vision for developing innovative decarbonisation technologies to help the state meet its net zero targets by 2050.
NSW Chief Scientist & Engineer Professor Hugh Durrant-Whyte and Member for Coogee Dr Marjorie O’Neill joined Ms Sharpe, along with UNSW and NSW Decarbonisation Innovation Hub representatives including Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Research & Enterprise, Professor Nicholas Fisk, Scientia Professor Deo Prasad, Scientia Professor Rose Amal and Professor John Fletcher.
Prof. Durrant-Whyte said the NSW Decarbonisation Innovation 2023 Study was a critical component of the NSW Government’s commitment to address climate change through becoming a leader in technologies which reduce our emissions footprint.
“NSW already possesses several competitive advantages in decarbonisation innovation, including a strong foundation in climate technology research, development and commercialisation. The challenge now is to ensure we meet our environmental responsibilities while maximising the economic potential to become a global leader in these technologies.
“This study shows there are opportunities for decarbonisation technologies to have significant environmental impact across sectors including energy, transport, the built environment, industry, and land and agriculture,” Prof. Durrant-Whyte said.
The 2023 study builds on the opportunities identified in the NSW Decarbonisation Innovation 2020 Study.
Prof. Fisk said as co-lead of the NSW Decarbonisation Innovation Hub (with the University of Newcastle), UNSW is fully committed to advancing research and development and collaborations with industry and others in critical areas – like solar, hydrogen, electrification, carbon capture – to drive emissions reductions.
“The Hub’s reason for being is to enable world-class researchers to work together to address climate change threats and develop concrete solutions and technologies to roll out, not just here in NSW but beyond and globally,” he said.
The NSW Decarbonisation Innovation Hub opened in June 2022 with funding from the state government and the NSW Environmental Trust. It works by driving and coordinating three networks to attract investment into decarbonisation technology and services:
- Powerfuels including Hydrogen – led by Prof. Amal
- Electrification and Energy Systems – led by Prof. Fletcher
- Land and Primary Industries – led by Professor Ben Smith (WSU)
While she was at UNSW, Minister Sharpe also toured the PowerFuel and Hyrdogen Lab with Prof. Amal and the Power System Simulator with Prof. Fletcher.