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    Equinor, SSE unveil plans for world's first hydrogen power plant


The plant will help decarbonise the UK's most carbon-intensive industrial cluster.

by: Joseph Murphy

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Equinor, SSE unveil plans for world's first hydrogen power plant

Norwegian energy group Equinor and UK utility SSE have agreed on joint development of the world's first 100% hydrogen-fuelled power station in the Humber region, the UK's most carbon-intensive industrial cluster, the companies said on April 8.

The Keadby hydrogen plant would consume up to 1,800 MW of hydrogen, providing local industry with a replacement for gas in power and heat generation. "With the appropriate policy mechanisms in place, Keadby Hydrogen could come online before the end of the decade," Equinor said.

The partners also plan a second 900-MW station called Keadby 3 that will run on natural gas, but fitted with CO2-capture technology. The CO2 will be transported offshore for storage under the North Sea seabed. The partners are currently preparing to submit a development application, and expect the plant to be up and running in 2027.

The projects will benefit from the Zero Carbon Humber initiative, also involving Equinor and SSE, which aims to develop hydrogen and CO2 infrastructure to capture some 17mn mt/yr of CO2 emissions from Humber industry. Equinor is also one of six companies in the Northern Endurance Partnership, which will transport these emissions and store them offshore. In addition, the company plans to launch the H2H Saltend hydrogen production plant in the mid-2020s.

"These world-leading power plants at Keadby will accelerate efforts across the Humber to create a decarbonised industrial cluster, and contribute to the UK’s goals for a green industrial revolution and reaching net zero," Equinor said. 

SSE is also developing the 900-MW Keadby-2 gas-fired power plant, using Siemens technology. Due on stream next year, it is expected to be the cleanest and most efficient gas-fired power station in Europe, said SSE last October. It secured a 15-yr capacity contract, whereby it collects money for being available if needed, a year ago.