Offshore components for the energy sector could soon be built using green hydrogen after a study to asses the fuel’s potential for use at Port of Nigg was launched.
Global Energy Group, owners of the Highland site, has teamed up with ScottishPower, through its recently launched Green Hydrogen Business, to identify processes and plants that could be powered by green hydrogen.
The adoption of green hydrogen, which is produced using energy from renewable soruces, would “significantly reduce” the carbon emissions at the site, according to Scottish Power.
A feasibility study will now be carried out to assess the full potential range of processes that could be supported by the zero emissions fuel.
It will also consider the most efficient and innovative way of delivering an end-to-end hydrogen production facility at the Cromarty Firth site.
Port of Nigg has already supported the construction of two of Scotland’s largest offshore wind farms, Beatrice and Moray East.
Earlier this week the facility near Tain was awarded the marshalling, storage and logistics base for Seagreen, which is on course to be Scotland’s largest offshore wind development.
Tim Cornelius, Global Energy Group’s CEO, said: “In just under a decade we have invested over £90m into the Port of Nigg, transforming it into a first class, new age, multi energy sector facility. Now, as we work to further expand our site to help deliver the UK’s offshore wind ambition we need to look at what we can do to lower our own carbon emissions.
Scotland’s Energy Minister, Paul Wheelhouse said: “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.
“The pace of industry-led hydrogen projects in Scotland is accelerating and I am pleased that ScottishPower, through their recently launched Green Hydrogen Business, have signed an agreement with Global Energy Group at their Port of Nigg site to identify how green hydrogen would be generated at site.”
Barry Carruthers, ScottishPower’s hydrogen director, added: “Green hydrogen provides a sustainable, scale-able, long-term energy solution and we are looking forward to working with Global Energy Group to develop and deliver green hydrogen for their operations.
“Electrification is vital to helping the UK decarbonise, but, in order for us to reach our climate change targets, we need to start developing and delivering green hydrogen now to the places where electrification can’t reach.
“Over the next five years we need to see industries as whole, and individual companies, that can’t be powered by electricity alone following in Global Energy Group’s footsteps and taking the decision to adopt green hydrogen.
“Green hydrogen presents us with a major opportunity and we are thrilled to begin working with ScottishPower. The benefits go beyond lowering our own carbon emissions in our operations at Nigg, but also potentially gives us the ability to support the wider Cromarty Firth and Highland area with their operations and net zero targets.
“This agreement will be a pioneering project for ScottishPower, showcasing what green hydrogen can help an industry achieve.”