Australian renewable natural gas (RNG) project developer Southern Green Gas Ltd (SGG) has announced that it has completed an equity capital raise of AU$600 000 to accelerate the development of its breakthrough renewable gas technology that aims to establish a new market for Australia’s clean energy.
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Using green hydrogen produced with Australia’s abundant solar resources, the technology – dubbed solar powerfuels – has, the company says, the potential to create a new export industry for Australia while addressing the country’s fuel security challenges.
Leading venture capital investors Artesian Venture Partners (Artesian) and Victorian Clean Technology Fund (VCTF) participated in the capital raise which will advance Southern Green Gas’ product and market development activities as it looks to scale renewable methane (aka synthetic natural gas – SNG) and methanol production in Australia.
Artesian is Australia’s largest and most active early-stage venture capital firm. Through its Clean Energy Seed Fund, Artesian, in collaboration with the government-owned green bank, Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC), is investing in novel clean technology companies, with Southern Green Gas the latest addition to its portfolio.
VCTF, which similarly targets clean technology enterprises, aims to commercialise solutions that address significant environmental and resource issues such as greenhouse gas emissions. The support for Southern Green Gas aligns with its investment mandate.
Southern Green Gas is one of the key initiatives in exploring the challenges of creating new fuel sourced from renewable energy. VCTF is pleased to be involved in supporting this promising technology and the team behind it, said Joseph Younane, VCTF Chair.
Southern Green Gas’ expansion of its activities comes at an important point for the advancement of clean energy in Australia and hydrogen in particular, with governments at all levels prioritising the development of a hydrogen industry aiming to create a new export commodity.
In May 2020, the company secured a total of AU$2.2 million from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) and APA Group to develop an SNG demonstration project at an APA gas hub in Queensland (QLD).
The investment by Artesian and VCTF further supports the confidence Southern Green Gas has in its technology, which leverages existing infrastructure to deliver clean fuels for use domestically and for export, said Rohan Gillespie, Managing Director, SGG.
According to SGG, renewable methane is the most effective hydrogen carrier and presents an enormous opportunity for Australia to reach its national objective to be a top-three supplier of hydrogen into Asian markets by 2030 and realise its economic stretch target – “H2 under 2” or hydrogen under AU$2 per kilogram.
By 2050, it is anticipated that the Australian hydrogen industry could create around 7 600 new jobs and up to AU$11 billion a year in additional Gross Domestic Product (GDP).