Air Products, the world’s largest hydrogen producer, plans to power a huge green hydrogen plant using 4 gigawatts of renewable Saudi electricity.
Air Products & Chemicals, the US industrial gas giant, has announced plans to build a green hydrogen plant in Saudi Arabia powered by 4 gigawatts of wind and solar power, the largest project of its kind announced so far. .
The $5 billion plant will be jointly owned by Air Products, ACWA Power of Saudi Arabia and Neom, a new mega-city planned near Saudi Arabia’s borders with Egypt and Jordan.
The fully operational facility will produce 650 tons of green hydrogen daily, enough for about 20,000 hydrogen-powered buses, Air Products said. The fuel will be shipped as ammonia to end markets globally and then converted back to hydrogen. Ammonia production is expected to start in 2025.
Air Products, based in Pennsylvania, claims to be the world’s largest hydrogen producer and a leader in liquefied natural gas technology. The company is listed on the New York Stock Exchange with a market value of nearly $60 billion.
The project would be a major step forward for Saudi Arabia’s ambition for Neom to become a major global hub for renewable energy and green hydrogen. The country is establishing Neom as a special economic zone, with the ambition to host 1 million people from all over the world.
This is a crucial moment for the development of Neom and a key element in the Saudi Vision 2030 that contributes to the Kingdom’s clean energy and circular carbon economy strategy.
Nadhmi Al Nasr, CEO of Neom.
Air Products CEO Seifi Ghasemi said the company is confident the project will be viable without subsidies given the accelerating global race for low-carbon transportation fuels. Any government support would be “the icing on the cake.”
There are 260 million commercial vehicles in the world. If 1% turns into hydrogen, you end up with huge numbers that would require 50 plants like this one. We have been working on this for four years, and our strategy was to be the first to build a mega-scale plant.
Seifi Ghasemi, CEO of Air Products.
In addition to the $5 billion plant, the project will require $2 billion of new distribution infrastructure, which will be owned by Air Products.
Several of the major oil and industrial players are rapidly accelerating their investments in green hydrogen. BP is studying the feasibility of an ammonia plant in Australia, powered by 1.5 gigawatts of solar and wind power.
” Hydrogen is no longer a niche, ” said Christoph Noeres, head of hydrogen and energy storage at Thyssenkrupp. “It will allow the sector to get closer to achieving the climate objectives of the Paris Agreement. Hydrogen has been identified as the key element for sustainable fuels and chemicals and can reduce or avoid CO2 in sectors where electrification is not possible . “