A Prestigious Visitor

EU Energy Commissioner Kadri Simson inspecting the HERO® demonstrator at Berkeley Vale

In early April, Star Scientific was honoured to be visited by Kadri Simson, the European Union’s Energy Commissioner, one of the most important individuals in the European transition to renewable energy. Her visit was on the recommendation of our contacts in the Office of Regional Economic Development New South Wales, who suggested she see an example of applied hydrogen development while in Australia.

She, of course, was shown our “coffee plunger” HERO® demonstration device and our heat exchanger. This was followed by a broad-ranging discussion on matters such as regulation, the impact of the EU’s Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism, industrial heat, and HERO®’s potential role in district heating.

The following day, the Commissioner addressed the National Press Club in Canberra, and emphasised the important strategic relationship between the EU and Australia in hydrogen, via the Clean Hydrogen Partnership.

Star Scientific in Queensland

Our team toured the Stanwell Power Station near Rockhampton and the nearby Future Energy Innovation and Training Hub

The Northern Australian state of Queensland is blessed with a range of conditions ideal for the development of a hydrogen industry. The “Sunshine State” not only has an abundance of the sun’s rays, wind, and water, but it also has a government with a clear vision of hydrogen’s role in the State’s energy transition and as a supplier of hydrogen to international markets.

The Government, via its Trade and Development Queensland department, has been keen for us to visit since we met with them at the Sustainable Energy Council’s APAC Hydrogen Summit in Sydney last year. This month, our Deputy CEO and Head of Business Development Matt Hingerty, our Global Head of Infrastructure Shayne De Courcy, and our Unit Principal – EDM, Dr Ashkan Vatani accepted the offer.

Our team visited the Gladstone region, with its rich heritage in the energy sector and as an industrial port. We held high-level discussions with government officials in Brisbane and visited industrial estates being developed between Brisbane and the Gold Coast. Everywhere we went, we were impressed with the integration of private investment, government policy and research and development in hydrogen. We were also excited by the multiple customer opportunities for our services.

Dr Ash Vatani and electrolysers at the Central Queensland University Centre for Hydrogen and Renewable Energy, Gladstone

Queensland will be a very important target for Star Scientific as we move into commercial operations. We will be back there in September for the follow-up SEC APAC Hydrogen Summit.


Star Opts for Green Energy

Star Scientific takes our commitment to Environment, Social and Governance (ESG) sustainability very seriously. It is critical to our future as a supplier, customer, employer, corporate citizen, and investment partner. To that end, we recently contracted with our energy supplier, AGL, for 100% certified “green” energy for our electricity supply. While this may be more expensive in the short term, it makes a very important statement about our long-term aspirations. We will implement more ESG policies as we progress.


More Awards and Nominations for Star

Star Scientific was delighted and surprised to learn that we have again been recognised on the award front.

The first is related to the New Mexico project, where we were one of fifteen projects across the United States to achieve the Trade and Industry Development Magazine’s “Community Impact Award.”  Not only does this recognise Star Scientific, but all the team at the Government of New Mexico for coordinating our project.

The second was a nomination as a finalist for the prestigious World Hydrogen 2024 Awards in the Industrial Application category, with the winners to be announced at the World Hydrogen Summit at Rotterdam on May 12. It’s an honour to be recognized among the top innovators in the field of hydrogen technology, in a category that we have won previously.


Star in Rotterdam

This of course means that we will once again be in Rotterdam as part of the huge Australian contingent (50 separate companies are attending) organised by the Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) at the World Hydrogen Summit. We have been amazed at how this conference has grown – from 1100 attendees in 2022 to 11,000 last year, and the reports are it will be even bigger this year!

We have an excellent series of meetings being lined up, including a follow-up with the EU after Kadri Simson’s visit. Our Chairman, Andrew Horvath, will also be continuing his role as a Hydrogen Advisory Board Member of the Sustainable Energy Council.

Following the conference, we’ll be visiting some European Union countries as we prepare for European operations.

There is still time to register for the Summit or the Exhibition and chat with our team in attendance. Registration for the exhibition part of the conference is free.