Equinor, a renowned petroleum refining firm, has reportedly published details regarding a major project based in the UK, where it plans to integrate hydrogen generation along with carbon capture as well as storage.
The project, known as H2H Saltend, or Hydrogen to Humber Saltend would be taking place at the Saltend Chemicals Park, an industrial area near the city of Hull, located in north of England. This project would be the biggest plant of its kind across the world, the energy giant claimed.
Hydrogen at this plant would be made from natural gas and transported to a power station and chemical plants. The Carbon dioxide that would be generated as a by-product of this process would be funneled offshore and then buried below the seabed.
It is expected that this novel scheme would help to cut annual carbon emissions at the Saltend Chemicals Park by about 900,000 metric tons. Hydrogen has several applications, as an energy carrier it can be used in fuel cells that provide power to buses, trains, and cars.
As per the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, hydrogen is not generally present on its own in nature. Instead, it is created from compounds that already contain it. Geothermal, solar, and fossil fuels are some of the sources listed by the department that can produce hydrogen. The production of hydrogen can be done using various processes like natural gas reforming, thermochemical processes, and electrolytic processes.
Meanwhile, Equinor hopes to produce a specific type of hydrogen known as blue hydrogen, which is hydrogen that is produced by using natural gas as a raw material with the resulting CO2 by-product captured and then safely stored.
A final decision regarding investment on the proposed Equinor scheme is likely to be taken in 2023, with the hydrogen production potentially starting in 2026. Equinor is one of the many companies looking to open projects aimed at hydrogen production. Recently, Repsol, a renowned Spanish oil and gas giant, announced its plans to develop a plant that would utilize green hydrogen and carbon dioxide to create net-zero emission fuels.