ExxonMobil has joined forces with SGN and the Green Investment Group (GIG) to explore the potential for a hydrogen hub in Southampton.
On 8 December, the trio signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to investigate the use of hydrogen and carbon capture to help reduce emissions in the Southampton industrial cluster. An initial feasibility study carried out by SGN and the GIG has found annual hydrogen demand from the cluster could rise to 37TWh by 2050, including the heating demand of 800,000 homes across the South of England.
The feasibility study further revealed that carbon capture facilities could capture an estimated 2mn tonnes of CO2 per year. This would include from initial hydrogen production of around 4.3TWh per year.
It means that an increase in hydrogen with carbon capture has the advantages of reducing emissions in the area’s industrial sector, stimulating the local economy through conversion of the natural gas network, and reducing emissions from domestic heating and transport. If technical and business feasibility are confirmed, and the right government support is in place, hydrogen production could commence from 2030.
Angus McIntosh, Director of Energy Futures at SGN, said the project has the potential to kickstart a net zero industrial cluster in Southampton and stimulate net zero gas networks across the South of England. McIntosh added: “Hydrogen will be key in our journey to net zero, providing a reliable, affordable and practical supply of clean energy to multiple sectors whilst ensuring security of supply. The creation of hydrogen hubs in and around industry is a great way of achieving scaled hydrogen demand and creating hydrogen economies.”