Green hydrogen will be price-competitive by 2030

InterContinental Energy, one of the largest developers and earliest investors in carbon-free “green hydrogen” projects, is forecasting that the cost of the fuel will be competitive by the end of the decade.

Alicia Eastman, president of the company, says the scale of its coastal clean energy hubs, in countries like Australia and Oman, would demonstrate the fuel could be cost competitive in the coming years.

Last month, BP took a 45 per cent stake in the Asian Renewable Energy Hub (AREH) in Western Australia that InterContinental Energy had first developed — thrusting the energy project into the spotlight.

BP will operate the AREH project as part of a move to accelerate its transition to renewable energy. It describes it as “one of the largest renewable and green hydrogen energy hubs in the world”. InterContinental will retain a 26.4 per cent stake.

InterContinental, which was set up in 2014, had initially targeted exporting green electricity by undersea cables but then saw the developing potential of hydrogen created from wind and solar.

The company, which has also attracted investment from Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, is looking to make hydrogen in the form of easily exportable ammonia, which can act as a solid-state carrier for the fuel.

Countries such as Oman, Australia and Saudi Arabia have the best conditions for green hydrogen production

With Europe facing a growing gas crisis this winter, Eastman says she is not worried about the continent backsliding towards fossil fuels, as the imperative to reduce the bloc’s reliance on Russian energy is accelerating interest in sustainable alternatives.

“I think most people are now saying within the EU: ‘Why didn’t we start this sooner?’

(Source: Financial Times, July 15 – 2022)

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