A trial project has been launched in the Australian state of Victoria to produce hydrogen from brown coal. With AU$100 million (US$77 million/€63 million) backing from the federal and Victorian governments to contribute to the AU$496 million (US$384 million/€311 million) project, construction of a demonstration plant is to begin mid this year, with completion scheduled for 2021. Carbon dioxide produced while synthesising the hydrogen will be stored in the Bass Strait, the body of water between the Australian mainland and the island of Tasmania. Partners to the project include Kawasaki Heavy Industries, J-Power, Iwatani Corporation, Marubeni and the Japanese Government, and the liquefied hydrogen will be shipped to Japan to help fuel the East Asian country’s planned hydrogen economy. It is a bold and rather expensive project, and comes after the failure of a project earlier this decade to find a new use for Victoria’s reserves of brown coal, but if successful could be a marker in a new sector in the world economy.