ATCO’s Hydrogen Journey
Our customers have told us that a cleaner energy future is important to them and they expect us to be part of making that future a reality. That’s why with the support of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency we’re investing $3.3 million in a leading research and development facility at our Jandakot Operations Centre, called the Clean Energy Innovation Hub.
ATCO is committed to identifying innovative energy solutions for customers that will further lower emissions and reduce costs. To help us do that, we have a range of research and development projects underway.
In 2019 we opened our world-class Clean Energy Innovation Hub (CEIH) in Jandakot, Western Australia with the support of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). The Hub generates ‘clean’ hydrogen through solar-powered electrolysis, and was a significant step in Western Australia’s moves towards a hydrogen economy.
Building on the research and development from our CEIH, ATCO is continuing to exploring potential futures in hydrogen as we work towards the development of a Clean Energy Innovation Park (CEIP).
The CEIP is intended to establish Australia’s first commercialised green hydrogen energy ecosystem, including a 10MW electrolyser and plant capable of producing up to 4.6 tonnes of hydrogen per day, along with up to three hydrogen refuelling stations. Hydrogen generated could be used to power fuel cell electric vehicles and supply industrial applications.
We’re also working with Fortescue Metals Group to deploy hydrogen vehicle fuelling infrastructure in Western Australia. This project will serve as a showcase for hydrogen mobility in the State and support the transition to the next generation of zero-emission transport.
ATCO's Global Hydrogen journey
When it comes to energy, everything depends on us emitting nothing–the energy we need with absolutely none of the emissions we don’t.
With its ability to provide energy without carbon and seamlessly work within our existing infrastructure, hydrogen presents an exciting opportunity for ATCO and the world.
In a first of its kind project for Alberta, ATCO will blend hydrogen into a subsection of its Fort Saskatchewan natural gas distribution system at a concentration of five percent, by volume. Because combustion of hydrogen emits only water, blending hydrogen into natural gas reduces the greenhouse gas (GHG) intensity of the natural gas stream.
Hydrogen blending is common in other countries, including Australia, where ATCO’s Clean Energy Innovation Hub is already generating hydrogen energy with the help of solar power and delivering it through their existing gas network. In Alberta, ATCO will use hydrogen derived from natural gas, supporting the ongoing exploration and production of Alberta’s abundant natural gas resources and demonstrating the safe and effective blending of hydrogen into the natural gas distribution system.
Not only will this create a roadmap for substantial greenhouse gas emissions reductions in the future, it will also bring many benefits to the Alberta economy and, most importantly, our customers.
For more information visit our global hydrogen projects page.
ATCO is committed to:
- Identifying innovative energy solutions for our customers that lower emissions and costs.
- Providing safe, reliable and affordable energy options for our customers.
- Maintaining the highest standards of safety and to developing the workforce of the future.
Clean Energy Innovation Hub
With the support of the Australian Renewable Energy Agency we’re investing $3.3 million in a leading research and development facility at our Jandakot Operations Centre, called the Clean Energy Innovation Hub.
Our industry-leading Clean Energy Innovation Hub is a testing bed for hybrid energy solutions and it integrates natural gas, solar PV, battery storage and hydrogen production.
The Clean Energy Innovation Hub is providing valuable insights into how our extensive existing gas distribution infrastructure can continue to benefit customers as part of the future energy mix.
Clean Energy Innovation Park
Building on from the CEIH research, ATCO was awarded $375,000 from the Western Australian Renewable Hydrogen Fund to conduct a feasibility study into the development of a commercial scale hydrogen production plant, which we have named the Clean Energy Innovation Park (CEIP).
The feasibility study, to which ATCO will contribute $125,000, is currently taking place, and the information from the study will be used to explore our hydrogen investment options.
Should the feasibility study return positive results, our next steps will be to build and commence operation of the CEIP by March 2022.
To read the Feasibility Study announcement visit: https://www.atco.com/en-au/about-us/stories/atco-secures-funding-for-hydrogen-feasibility-study.html
Location: Western Australia
Category: Renewable Energy; Hydrogen
ATCO HYDROGEN STORIES
ATCO AND FORTESCUE POWER ON WITH HYDROGEN
ATCO and Fortescue Metals Group (Fortescue) have signed an agreement to explore the potential to deploy hydrogen vehicle fuelling infrastructure in Western Australia.
Under the agreement, the two parties will collaborate to facilitate the construction and operation of a combined hydrogen production and refuelling facility at ATCO’s existing facility in Jandakot in the Perth metropolitan area, with the possibility of wider deployment across WA.
The initial refuelling facility will provide ATCO, Fortescue and agreed third parties with the opportunity to refuel vehicles capable of utilising hydrogen as the primary fuel source, including a fleet of Toyota Mirai fuel cell electric vehicles which have been made available by Toyota Motor Corporation Australia.
Read more here.
ATCO SECURES FUNDING FOR HYDROGEN FEASIBILITY STUDY
ATCO has been awarded $375,000 from the Western Australian Renewable Hydrogen Fund to conduct a feasibility study into the development of a commercial scale hydrogen production plant, which we have named the Clean Energy Innovation Park (CEIP).
Western Australian Minister for Regional Development, Alannah MacTiernan, MLC announced today that ATCO is one of seven organisations from around the State to share in almost $1.7 million to conduct feasibility studies into renewable hydrogen projects.
The CEIP is intended to establish Australia’s first commercialised green hydrogen energy ecosystem, including a 10MW electrolyser and plant capable of producing up to 4.6 tonnes of hydrogen per day, along with up to three hydrogen refuelling stations.
Read more here.
Complementary energy solutions
We know that natural gas already delivers a lower-carbon alternative to many traditional energy sources, and we believe it is ideally placed to complement and further enable the continued implementation of intermittent renewable energy.
At the same time, we are committed to further reduce the carbon footprint of the gas distribution network and provide ongoing secure, reliable, affordable and low-carbon energy options. We are excited about these opportunities and believe it will help drive clean energy research and development that can have major long term benefits for consumers.
Powering our people
Change is coming and we’re making sure our workforce is prepared. By continually upskilling our people, we’re making sure WA will have the energy workforce to support new energy technology.
Hydrogen is the most common element in the universe and when combined with oxygen it makes water. A number of countries have been using hydrogen as a fuel source for many years including Japan, Iceland and Denmark because it offers a low emission alternative to other fuel sources.
Indeed, town gas which was used in the Perth region up until 1970’s was a mix of gases including 50% hydrogen. Like natural gas, hydrogen can be used to create electricity, stored for later use or exported. At the Clean Energy Innovation Hub we are continuing to investigate and test how we can blend hydrogen within our existing natural gas network.
The Clean Energy Innovation Hub and Park projects draws on ATCO’s established expertise and safety in handling natural gas. ATCO will apply the same degree of rigour in our approach to the safe handling of hydrogen appropriate to the amount we will be producing, which at the Hub is about 10kg a day, roughly the same amount as a standard LPG barbecue gas bottle.
Our Jandakot Operations Centre is maintained regularly, subject to regular testing of all safety systems, is directly wired to the local fire station and is licensed by the State Government.