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NEWS & INSIGHTS | article

Net Zero Technology Centre kicks off project to examine marine vessel hydrogen transportation and storage

11 February 2021 3 minute read
  • The Net Zero Technology Centre, Scottish Government and industry partners announce a project to examine the potential of marine vessel hydrogen transportation and storage in Scotland.
  • Focused on safe marine transportation and storage of hydrogen, the project will evaluate the techno-economical, safety and environmental benefits of Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carriers for marine transportation.

The Net Zero Technology Centre, in partnership with Scottish Government, Global Energy Group, Pale Blue Dot (on behalf of the Acorn Project), Port of Cromarty Firth, Environmental Resources Management (ERM) and Shetland Island Council, have today announced details of a collaborative study to examine the potential of Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carriers (LOHC) for the transportation of hydrogen.

The Net Zero Technology Centre is committed to developing and deploying technologies to enable an affordable net zero North Sea and this project is an important step to advance knowledge of hydrogen transportation and storage technologies needed to enable a Scottish hydrogen economy to develop.

The project also aligns with the recent Scottish Government Hydrogen Policy announcement to work with research partners to explore the safe and cost-effective options for the marine transport of hydrogen between Scotland and the UK and European ports.

The initial phase of the study will be conducted by Environmental Resources Management (ERM). The project will investigate how liquid organic hydrogen carriers can be used as a mass transportation solution from sources of hydrogen around the UK and Europe.

Focused on safe marine transportation and storage of hydrogen, ERM will evaluate the techno-economical, safety and environmental benefits of LOHC for marine transportation.  The project will also examine the suitability of existing conventional oil and gas assets and ports. 

Importantly, the project will gather evidence to assess the technical and economic feasibility of repurposing existing marine assets for LOHC transportation as well as loading and offloading safety requirements. 

Environmental assessments comparing various mass transportation solutions will determine further phases of the study, which could potentially lead to trials within four years.

The Net Zero Technology Centre’s CEO, Colette Cohen, said:

“Our centre is committed to accelerating the transition of our industry to an affordable net zero future. This important project will enable us to understand the end-to-end production through delivery requirements for hydrogen which is essential if we are to create an economically viable hydrogen economy, supporting manufacturing and jobs. Working together with our Government and industry partners, we will continue to invest in technology innovation that targets low carbon solutions, alternative fuels and technologies that drive to net zero – positioning the North East of Scotland as a leader in the energy transition.”

Scotland’s Energy Minister, Paul Wheelhouse, said:

“I am delighted at the commencement of this project examining Marine Vessel Hydrogen Transportation and Storage. The Scottish Government is committed to supporting the emerging hydrogen sector in Scotland while also maximising the ‘new-industry’ benefits that the production and export of hydrogen may bring. This collaborative project reflects the opportunities for hydrogen development and energy transition.

“Hydrogen has a potentially very important role to play in ensuring Scotland becomes a net-zero economy by 2045. Our abundant natural resources will support the establishment of a thriving hydrogen sector here, in Scotland, and in the emerging global hydrogen market.

“It is clear that hydrogen is not just an energy and emissions reduction opportunity; it could also have an important role in generating new economic growth for Scotland by creating new jobs, and supporting a just transition. This is why the Scottish Government is investing an additional £100 million over the next five years to help realise this potential.”

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