Chile producer exporter hydrogen
Build hydrogen on wind energy
Possibility Suriname ??
Amsterdam, March 1, 2023 — Using wind for sustainable electricity generation is a key priority on President Gabriel Boric’s greening agenda. When he took office almost a year ago, he promised to green the Chilean economy, which is mainly driven by fossil fuels and copper extraction.
Sustainable generation already provides for more than 50% of the electricity requirement. That percentage will increase further, because the government wants all coal-fired power stations to be closed or given a different destination by 2040 at the latest.
Santiago is trying to attract private investors to use the wind for commercial purposes, among other things to meet the high costs of the energy transition for the population. “As many of our industries, such as oil extraction in the south and coal extraction in the north, slowly disappear in this green world, we must offer people an alternative so that not a single job is lost and we ensure economic stability.” , says Secretary of Energy
Haru Oni, a $74 million pilot project about 25 miles north of Punta Arenas, is the result of that policy. In the middle of an almost bare plain stands an enormous wind turbine with a number of buildings. One of them contains an electrolysis installation that breaks down water molecules into oxygen and hydrogen.
The oxygen is released into the atmosphere, the hydrogen is captured. In combination with carbon dioxide, this is made into methanol, a cleaner fuel than petrol.
Haru Oni is a collaborative project of Siemens Energy, Porsche and the Italian energy company Enel, among others. The plans were announced in 2020 and the plant was commissioned at the end of 2022.
“Everything we do with oil today, we can do with synthetic fuels tomorrow. Whether it’s plastics, chemicals or transportation, fossil fuels can be replaced with a synthetic and green alternative produced from renewable energy,” said Clara Bowman, chief operations officer at Highly Innovative Fuels (HIF) Global, the company that leads the project.
Truly green hydrogen
Almost all hydrogen currently produced worldwide is so-called ‘grey’ hydrogen; that means it is produced on the basis of fossil fuels – mainly natural gas, but also coal. Diesel refineries and fertilizer manufacturers are the largest consumers of gray hydrogen. There is now increasing interest in truly green hydrogen, because it can be an alternative to the polluting fuel that is now used in transport, including train and ship transport.
Chile wants to be one of the top three exporters of green hydrogen by 2040. According to Bloomberg analysts, the country could become one of the cheapest producing suppliers of hydrogen, with projected levelized costs of $1.09 per kilogram of hydrogen by the end of this decade. In so-called levelized costs, all costs and benefits of the production of a certain energy source are included, so that different forms of energy generation can be compared with each other.
“The Chilean government was the first in Latin America with a hydrogen strategy. That’s a powerful signal to developers and prospective customers,” said Bloomberg analyst Natalia Castilhos Rypl. “Brazil may eventually become the largest producer in the region, but Chile is currently leading the way.”
In Chile, 41 projects for the production of green hydrogen are already underway. Haru Oni is one of the most advanced global projects.
The pilot plant delivered the first batch of synthetic gasoline in December; a total of 130,000 liters must have been produced by the end of this year. Porsche is currently the only customer. The German car manufacturer uses the synthetic petrol in demonstration models. The plan is to supply to different types of customers, such as shipping companies and airlines. One of the emerging problems is that of employment. And possibly the second even more serious obstacle is that of bird migration.
End Part I