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Houston as the epicenter of a global clean hydrogen hub

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Charley Rattan's picture
World Hydrogen Leader Charley Rattan Associates

UK based offshore wind & hydrogen corporate advisor and trainer; Faculty member World Hydrogen Leaders. Delivering global hydrogen and offshore wind corporate investment advice, business...

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This report is the result of work by the Houston Energy Transition Initiative’s (HETI) Hydrogen Working Group, a collaboration organized by the Greater Houston Partnership (GHP) and the Center for Houston’s Future (CHF) to develop a shared vision for how the Houston region and the state of Texas can lead the energy transition. HETI seeks to leverage Houston’s energy leadership to accelerate global solutions for a low-carbon future. HETI’s objective is to create a vision and a blueprint for growing the region’s economy, exporting low-carbon products and expertise, equitably creating new jobs, and helping Houston achieve the goals of its Climate Action Plan.

The report examines one aspect of that goal: the viability of a Houston-led clean hydrogen regional hub and describes what the state could achieve in terms of scale, cost, and diversity of projects over time. The Department of Energy (DOE) defines a regional clean hydrogen hub as “a network of clean hydrogen producers, potential clean hydrogen consumers, and connective infrastructure located in close proximity.”1 In addition, in the recently passed Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Congress defined “clean hydrogen” as hydrogen production that 1 DOE Update on Hydrogen Shot, RFI Results, and Summary of Hydrogen Provisions in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, U.S. Department of Energy, December 8, 2021. Retrieved from: https://www.energy.gov/sites/default/files/2021-12/h2iq-12082021.pdf 2 H.R.3684 - Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, U.S. Congress website, November 15, 2021. Retrieved from: https://www.congress.gov/bill/117th-congress/house-bill/3684/text meets specific CO2 emissions targets

.2 Consistent with these definitions, this report focuses on building a view of the physical clean hydrogen value chain in Texas, including competitive advantages and unlocks required to drive the creation of the hub. More specifically, the report discusses the supply of and the demand for clean hydrogen in Texas and offers a vision and a roadmap for how a hydrogen ecosystem led by Houston could develop.

This report presents a baseline view of clean hydrogen in Texas, reflecting a shared understanding of the potential among several players across the value chain. This view has been iteratively codeveloped and incorporates inputs from members of the Hydrogen Working Group. The report demonstrates how Houston can become a true hydrogen economy, which will require markets, infrastructure, pricing, carbon trading, and risk management. Such an ecosystem will be transformative by enabling participants across different value chain segments to drive innovation.

 

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