Plans announced for 30MW green hydrogen hub in Pembrokeshire
Norwegian energy developer Statkraft has announced plans to develop a major green hydrogen production hub at the site of disused rail storage in Pembrokeshire.
The company is looking to transform the site of the former Royal Navy Armaments Depot into a green hydrogen production capacity of around 30GW. The hydrogen generated there, using electrolysis, would be used to serve the transport, manufacturing and industrial sectors.
Renewable electricity to serve the Trecwn Green Energy Hub will be generated from three onshore wind turbines and a ground-mounted solar array under Statkraft’s plans.
Statkraft told edie that it is hoping to submit the plans by the end of 2023. If the planning process runs smoothly, the site could be operational by the end of 2026. Around 5,000 homes and businesses in the local area will be contacted by Statkraft in the coming weeks asking if they would like to participate in consultations.
Statkraft UK’s head of RES eFuels and European wind and solar, Matt Kelly, said the project “presents an exciting opportunity to produce homegrown green energy for local use and has the potential to act a catalyst for the redevelopment of Trecwn Valley.”
The UK Government has committed to growing national low-carbon hydrogen production capacity to 10GW by 2030. At least half of this will need to be green. Hydrogen is considered necessary to the net-zero transition, for decarbonising hard-to-abate sectors such as heavy transport and heavy industry. It produces no greenhouse gases at the point of combustion. However, most global production is currently fossil-fuelled, meaning that it is not a low-carbon solution across the lifecycle.
Funds and accelerators
In related news, Hy24 Partners – a joint venture from investment firms FiveT Hydrogen and Ardian – has closed what it claims is the world’s largest infrastructure fund for the low-carbon hydrogen sector to date.
The €2bn fund will be used to invest across the hydrogen value chain. As well as production, storage and distribution will be supported.
Among the investors in the fund are TotalEnergies, Air Liquide, Airbus, AXA and Allianz. In total, it attracted more than 50 investors from 13 countries.
Hy24Partners estimates that the fund will enable the deployment of up to €20bn of investment within a six-year period.
Elsewhere, the Carbon Trust has announced a new clean hydrogen accelerator with backing from the UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
Modelled on the Trust’s offshore wind accelerator, the aim of the project is to help achieve economies of scale for clean hydrogen, so that it becomes cost-competitive with the grey (fossil) hydrogen that dominates global markets today.
The accelerator will convene players across the British hydrogen value chain for innovation programmes. It will cover all production methods which can comply with BEIS’s Low-Carbon Hydrogen Standard.
“This new clean hydrogen accelerator fills a gap in the current innovation landscape by focusing on stimulating the supply chain,” said the Carbon Trust’s chair Baroness Brown.
At this point, the Carbon Trust is calling for new industry participants to join the accelerator. Its first step will be to shape a plan for innovation programmes.