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bp launches green hydrogen cluster

2 Mar 2023

bp has launched the green hydrogen cluster of the Valencia region (HyVal) at its Castellón refinery, a public-private collaborative initiative aimed at decarbonizing the operations of the facility. HyVal, led by bp, is set to include the phased development of up to 2GW of electrolysis capacity by 2030 for producing green hydrogen. The transformation of the refinery, including green hydrogen, biofuels, and renewable energy, could see bp invest up to €2 billion in Castellon by 2030.

Andrés Guevara, President of bp Energía España, sees HyVal as "key to Castellón’s transformation and critical to supporting decarbonization across the Valencia region". The initiative aims to develop up to 2GW of electrolysis capacity by 2030 for green hydrogen production, triple the refinery's production of biofuels to help meet the growing demand for lower carbon fuels such as Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), and play an important role in the region's efforts to decarbonize and support thousands of industrial jobs.

In addition to being used by bp at the refinery, the green hydrogen produced will also be used in key hard-to-abate industries in the Valencia region, such as the ceramic industry replacing natural gas used in their processes, chemical industries for the production of green ammonia, and in heavy transportation.

HyVal's hydrogen production is expected to be developed in phases, with the first, expected to be operational in 2027, involving the installation of an electrolysis plant with at least 200MW capacity at Castellón refinery. This initial stage is expected to produce up to 31,200 tonnes of green hydrogen per year, which, when used to replace natural gas, is estimated to be able to avoid more than 300,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year in the refinery, thermo-intensive industries, and heavy transportation. This green hydrogen will also be used as a feedstock for the production of SAF at the refinery.

In the second phase, which could be completed in 2030, the electrolysis plant would be expanded to reach a capacity of up to 2GW of net installed power. Green hydrogen production from such a world-scale plant could support both regional and national demand, as well as positioning Valencia region to export green hydrogen to the rest of Europe through the Mediterranean corridor of green hydrogen H2Med.

Carolina Mesa, bp’s Vice President Hydrogen, Spain and New Markets, believes that "the production of green hydrogen will be another step in strategic energy autonomy for Spain and more widely for Europe." The Valencia region, already home to strategic infrastructure and facilities that can play a critical role in developing a green hydrogen economy, including ports and wind and solar power generation capacity, is well-connected with national and international markets, enabling it to support decarbonization of hard-to-abate industries in Spain, like transport and chemicals.

HyVal, a broad initiative led by bp, also includes the potential participation from companies from various industries in the region, public institutions, and research and training centers. It is anticipated that the full development of HyVal will create up to 5,000 direct, indirect, and induced jobs in the region.

With a goal to build a leading position in green hydrogen globally and produce 0.5-0.7 million tonnes a year of mostly green hydrogen by 2030, bp is progressing a number of green hydrogen projects throughout the world, including in the UK, Australia, and Germany. The production of green hydrogen is seen as a future fuel that can play a crucial role in decarbonizing various industries, including heavy transportation, and achieving carbon neutrality.

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