Many power generators believe hydrogen is poised to play a major role in addressing climate change. They see the advantages of hydrogen to include fuel flexibility through the ability to blend hydrogen with natural gas, fuel security through integration with hydrogen storage, and the flexibility to follow loads from variable generation.
Many of the major turbine manufacturers such as, GE, Siemens, and Mitsubishi Power have been focusing efforts on hydrogen combustion in gas turbines, particularly for large-scale generation. You may have seen our recent articles concerning 5% hydrogen blending with plans to gradually increase it to 30% by 2030.
While hydrogen does not produce carbon dioxide (CO2) when combusted, it does produce nitrogen oxide (NOx) also considered a greenhouse gas. However, it only accounts for about 8% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.
The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program recently completed their review of “concept submittals” from 79 organizations concerning their plan for hydrogen production. They have now encouraged 33 of them to proceed with a “full submittal” application – it must be submitted by April 7, 2023. Ultimately, the program will award up to $7 billion to organizations for the establishment of 6-10 regional clean hydrogen hubs (H2Hubs) across the U.S. One of these regional hubs, The Great Lakes Clean Hydrogen (GLCH) coalition has announced their plans to move forward with a “full submittal”. (Recall our GLCH article in the January Newsletter).
The GLCH coalition, made up of Linde, Energy Harbor, Cleveland-Cliffs Inc., GE Aerospace, and the University of Toledo, proposes to develop low-carbon hydrogen via electrolysis at the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio. The facility would distribute the hydrogen across the Great Lakes region by pipeline and road transportation.
Their region can capitalize on the availability of 20.5 Gigawatts (GW) of nuclear power generation with a potential of producing 8,900 to 12,300 tons/day of hydrogen from electrolysis and allow them to service the Ohio and Michigan region’s automotive, power generation, trucking, technology, and steel manufacturing suppliers.
The Department of Energy (DOE) believes producing, processing, delivering, storing, and using clean hydrogen in the industrial sector is critical to the nation’s strategy of a 100% clean electrical grid by 2035 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.