ATCO: Learning about renewable hydrogen
Hydrogen has a number of uses that many Australians might already be familiar with.
It can be used as a source of energy, like natural gas or diesel and is the third most abundant element on earth.
But what might be new to some is renewable or green hydrogen and how it can be produced using renewable energy and producing zero emissions.
That’s in contrast to brown, grey or blue hydrogen which are all produced from fossil fuels – either coal or natural gas – and generate carbon emissions.
ATCO operates and maintains Western Australia’s largest natural gas distribution network.
The company is also working in the space to help WA become a leader in green hydrogen, as Kapz Malhotra, General Manager Customer and Innovation at ATCO’s gas division, explained.
Speaking on a podcast mini series Powering Your Future with Simon Beaumont on 6PR Radio, Mr. Malhotra outlined how green hydrogen is made.
In WA, there are a number of uses for hydrogen on a private or commercial scale.
“Renewable hydrogen, also called green hydrogen, is created using renewable energy like wind or solar,” he said.
“Hydrogen could support the intermittent nature of renewable energy. By capturing it at generation and storing it, it can be used at different times, when needed.”
In 2019, ATCO launched a Clean Energy Innovation Hub, a testbed for hybrid energy solutions that integrate natural gas, solar PV, battery storage and green hydrogen production.
Mr. Malhotra said this has provided some valuable insights.
“Since then, we’ve been blending 10 per cent hydrogen into the gas network on site,” he said.
They are also working with Fortescue Metals Group to build a hydrogen vehicle refueling station at the Hub which can fill a car’s tank in minutes.
There’s more works in the pipeline for ATCO.
“We’re also building Australia’s first commercialised green hydrogen energy ecosystem – with a plan to blend the hydrogen into the gas distribution network in the future,” Mr. Malhotra said.
If you want to know more about any of ATCO’s key projects, visit atco.com/h2au