The Mysterious Green Hydrogen Investors Are No Longer Mysterious

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Some US lawmakers are still determined to throw roadblocks in the way of renewable energy, but investors can’t resist the lure of clean electricity opportunities in the US. The latest example is a Danish company that claims to be “a global leader in offshore wind.” They are focusing their financial might on the green hydrogen market in the US, with help from one of the country’s largest private enterprises.

Leading Global Wind Developer Jumps On Green Hydrogen Bandwagon

Kicking dirty fossil fuels out of the global economy has been the focus of much attention since the early 2000s. In recent years hydrogen has also caught fire. Hydrogen – widely used in fuels, food systems, metallurgy, refining and other key industrial sectors – drags down a supply chain dependent on natural gas, with coal also playing a role.

Fossil energy stakeholders promote the idea that a change in carbon capture could clean up the hydrogen supply chain. Meanwhile, however, the falling cost of renewable energy is pulling the rug out from under it. Investors turned the financial spigot to electrolysis projects, which deploy electricity from renewable resources to push so-called “green hydrogen” from water.

CleanTechnica A lot of ink has been spilled on the investment movement around green hydrogen (see more coverage here), but somehow the Danish company Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners has slipped under the radar.

CIP was launched in 2012 and they have been quite busy for the past 12 years. Besides wind, CIP also lists “solar PV, biomass and energy-from-waste, transmission and distribution, reserve capacity, storage, advanced bioenergy, and Power-to-X” among the 12 funds it manages, in a total of 26 billion euros, and now they are turning the spotlight on green hydrogen.

More Green Hydrogen For the USA

CIP’s headquarters in New York put it in the catbird’s seat for US energy development, where the Biden administration’s new $8 billion hydrogen hub program is taking shape. The program is funded under the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which stipulates a carve-out for conventional hydrogen. However, the main driver is green hydrogen, and CIP does not allow grass to grow under its feet.

In October, CIP announced that it had partnered with US company Tenaska to develop an unspecified number of “gigawatt-scale green hydrogen projects” in the US, aimed at the local and global market for the chain. of hydrogen including ammonia, methanol, sustainable aviation fuel, and “other clean fuels in key US hydrogen markets.”

“The agreement will support the targets of the US Department of Energy’s National Clean Hydrogen Strategy and Roadmap to achieve the production of 10 million metric tons (MMT) of clean hydrogen per year by 2030, 20 MMT per year by 2040, and 50 MMT per year by 2050,” the partners noted in a press release dated October 26.

The two companies did not describe their plans in detail, but Tenaska Development president Joel Link is clearly ready for action.

Green hydrogen presents exciting opportunities for the energy, transportation and agricultural sectors, among others, to achieve climate and decarbonization goals,” he said, adding that “Tenaska looks forward to working together with local and international hydrogen consumers to develop the right solutions for their clean energy needs.”

Leading Private US Company Hearts Hydrogen, Clean Or Not

Tenaska did not cross the CleanTechnica radar for a long time, although we noticed the company’s strong solar energy activity about 10 years ago.

We have something to do. Tenaska is one of the largest private companies in the US, nailing down the #12 slot in the Forbes the magazine’s annual list of the largest private companies in the US. Raising $2 billion or more in revenue is the cut to make the list.

Tenaska maintains a strong footprint in the natural gas industry, but a wind and solar portfolio of more than 2.7 gigawatts shows that the company can also flex its decarbonization muscles. In total, Tenaska cites a financial record that includes “$21.2 billion in financing through banks, capital market transactions and corporate facilities,” in addition to “more than $6.5 billion in financing in acquisition for power generation and assets in the middle.”

“As technologies continue to advance and market appetite for renewable power continues to grow, Tenaska Developments is targeting high-value opportunities, the company said.

Investors To Lawmakers: Lalalalala

That thing about the market’s appetite for renewable power has a funny ring to it, considering what’s going on with US lawmakers. In particular, Republican state and federal lawmakers — who once billed themselves as guardians of the free market — have pulled out all the stops to protect fossil energy stakeholders from free-market opinions. financial industry professionals.

The Republican-led House Judiciary Committee, for example, has made room on its relatively busy plate to investigate the green investor movement. On November 1 the leading non-profit shareholder advocacy organization As You Sow reported that it received a letter from the Committee alleging violations of antitrust law “by entering into agreements to decarbonize corporate assets and reduce emissions to net zero with potentially harmful effects on Americans. freedom and economic well-being.

As You Sow also noted that the companies Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), Glass Lewis, Engine No.1, Trillium Asset Management, Arjuna Capital, and Aviva Investor Americas received similar letters.

These outfits are small potatoes compared to leading global asset manager BlackRock, which has been a particular focus of partisan criticism over the past two years. Apparently BlackRock wasn’t listening. In August, BlackRock announced a new $1.2 billion climate fund to help New Zealand meet its 100% renewable energy goal for electricity, making it “the largest single country’s low-carbon transition investment initiative undertaken by BlackRock to date.”

Can Tiny New Zealand Beat the USA in the Green Hydrogen Punch?

When New Zealand Prime Minister Chris Hipkins announced the new fund, he made it clear that his country is ready to take on the global clean electricity market.

This is the first of its kind funding in the country that shows the huge economic potential of New Zealand as a climate leader and our goal of generating 100% renewable electricity, Hipkins said.

On December 15, the New Zealand government also published a hydrogen road map that describes how green hydrogen can further the country’s electrification goals.

“There are opportunities for green hydrogen to reduce emissions in areas that are difficult to electrify, support regional economic reforms, and support our energy security and stability,” said the Ministry of Business. , Innovation & Employment.

If New Zealand has its eyes on global leadership, they must act quickly. The Earth is filled with many new green hydrogen projects aimed at international markets as well as local demand, one of which is the newly announced Helax Istmo project by CIP in Oxaca, Mexico.

“Helax is expected to produce green hydrogen and green marine fuels, which will contribute materially to the goals of sustaining the development of Mexico, as well as to the decarbonization of the shipping industry worldwide,” stated the CIP on Friday, with a global emphasis.

Speaking of moving fast, Republican members of the Judiciary Committee who are concerned about “American freedom and economic well-being” might want to consider aiming their slings and arrows at Texas, which has emerged as a renewable energy source and center of green hydrogen and. production of e-fuels despite its historical stake in fossil energy.

Photo: Offshore wind turbines courtesy of Copenhagen Infrastructure Funds.


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