May 27, 2021: ESB in Ireland has signed a memorandum of understanding with energy storage developer dCarbonX to assess and develop offshore hydrogen storage, the firms announced on May 26.
The storage will be in subsurface storage caverns off the coast of Ireland in what the partnership says will become a ‘green hydrogen valley’ centred around the Poolbeg peninsula in Dublin, “integrating renewable hydrogen production and storage with a view to decarbonizing heavy transport, shipping, industry and power generation”.
The hydrogen stored could be used to balance the grid, producing the gas from surplus wind power for conversion back into the grid when the wind is not blowing.
“ESB and dCarbonX will work together on licensing, environmental studies, site selection, project sanctioning, offshore infrastructure development, commissioning and operations in areas that are adjacent to ESB’s existing and planned future infrastructure,” the companies said.
Hydrogen today comes in many colours.
Believed to be a ‘clean’ fuel itself, the act of manufacturing it as a fuel is energy intensive and produces carbon, now considered a profanity in today’s environment.
If the gas is produced through coal gasification, it is known as brown hydrogen. If created from natural gas, it becomes grey hydrogen. If the manufacturing process uses carbon capture and stores the evil gases produced in creating grey hydrogen, it is promoted to blue hydrogen.
Turquoise hydrogen sits in the cleanliness ranking just below blue, because while the process produces solid carbon using a molten metal pyrolysis, that can then be used for industrial applications, thus redeems itself. Yellow hydrogen is runner-up to green, using nuclear power to produce the gas, and top of the colour order is green hydrogen, which is produced using solely renewable energy.
Market analysts Wood MacKenzie predicts that green hydrogen will become cost competitive by 2040.