Fort Saskatchewan Hydrogen Blending Project
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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.
Highlights: This project was awarded $2.8 million by Emissions Reduction Alberta's (ERA) Natural Gas Challenge.
- Blending hydrogen into natural gas reduces the greenhouse gas (GHG) intensity of the natural gas stream, thus creating a lower carbon energy for our customers.
- Leverages our natural gas resources, existing infrastructure, and energy expertise.
- Alberta can produce ultra-low emissions hydrogen at a lower cost than almost any other jurisdiction in the world.
- Affordably decarbonizes the production of heat, which is vital to achieve Canada’s long-term emissions and energy goals.
- ERA Hydrogen Blending Announcement (July 2020)
Home Inspections - coming soon
We plan to visit all homes and businesses in the project zone to inspect appliances prior to launch. Stay tuned for more details.
Is hydrogen safe?
Yes. As with natural gas, hydrogen can be produced, transported, stored and used safely. Just like natural gas, it must be treated with respect and with the proper care and handling.
At ATCO, safety is always the first and top priority in everything we do. We care deeply about our people and our customers and would never move forward with a project that is not safe. Our experts will conduct numerous inspections and testing of the target network infrastructure and customers’ domestic appliances to ensure safety.
Hydrogen is becoming central to the decarbonization plans in many advanced economies around the globe such as Australia, Germany, Japan, and South Korea. In fact, the Hawaiian gas network currently contains 10 to 15 per cent hydrogen and the Hong Kong gas network contains approximately 50 per cent hydrogen.
Will the Fort Saskatchewan H2 blending project affect my natural gas bill?
No, our Fort Saskatchewan customers will not notice any difference on their natural gas bill.
Why would you want to blend hydrogen into natural gas?
Blending hydrogen into natural gas reduces the greenhouse gas (GHG) intensity of the natural gas stream, thus creating a lower carbon energy for our customers. Blending hydrogen is not a new technology, as there are several systems already in operation in Europe, as well as at our own Clean Energy Innovation Hub in Australia.
Will this impact my appliances?
No. Extensive research has found that hydrogen blended into natural gas systems at ratios up to 20 per cent does not impact appliances. Be sure to check out our applicance testing video that shows how the different blends of hydrogen affect the look of the flame in a stovetop, furnace, and fireplace.
Has this blending technology been used before, or are we the first?
Several hydrogen blending projects are currently operating in Europe. This is the first project of its kind here in Alberta that uses existing local resources and infrastructure to blend hydrogen into a subsection of Fort Saskatchewan’s residential natural gas distribution system.