It’s 1766. British scientist Henry Cavendish is experimenting in his laboratory. Nearly by likelihood, he discovers one thing he phrases “flamable air.”
As The Power Weblog of RWE provides: “Again then, nobody suspects that the fuel will sometime change into one of many nice hopes of power provide: introducing hydrogen.”
Hydrogen is a darling of clean-energy followers, a fuel that when burned produces solely water, and never the carbon emissions related to fossil fuels.
An important hope certainly, however getting there isn’t that simple. We’ve got an extended approach to go, and there are carbon prices in producing the hydrogen.
Nonetheless, hydrogen is of a lot curiosity to a lot of First Nations in Canada, and a few are concerned within the early levels of creating Canadian hydrogen.
The federal authorities issued a hydrogen technique in 2020 that mentioned: “Hydrogen is likely to be nature’s smallest molecule however its potential is gigantic. It offers new markets for our standard power assets, and holds the potential to decarbonize many sectors of our economic system, together with useful resource extraction, freight, transportation, energy era, manufacturing, and the manufacturing of metal and cement.”
Ottawa spoke of “positioning Canada to change into a world-leading provider of hydrogen applied sciences,” decreasing emissions, providing “distinctive alternatives for Indigenous communities and companies,” producing greater than 350,000 jobs, and “using hydrogen as a key enabler to succeed in net-zero emissions by 2050.”
Ottawa’s hydrogen technique declared: “This may place Canada as a world-leading producer, consumer and exporter of unpolluted hydrogen, and related applied sciences.”
However the technique was in essence “a name to motion” with 32 suggestions. It was extra of a plan to develop a plan. A lot the identical will be mentioned, too, of provincial hydrogen methods akin to BC’s “sustainable pathway” of 63 actions. There’s certainly an extended approach to go earlier than Canada turns into a world participant.
Hydrogen will be produced from sources that embrace pure fuel. Canada is the world’s fifth-largest producer of fuel. Its has reserves which might be No. 18 on the earth, and will final us for a few hundred years.
The feds notice that “Canada is already one of many high 10 world hydrogen producers.” However solely a bit is exported, with the principle utilization being home, in oil refining, ammonia manufacturing, methanol manufacturing and metal manufacturing.
When German chancellor Olaf Scholz visited Canada final summer season with hopes of securing long-term provides of LNG, Prime Minister Trudeau declared that “there has by no means been a robust enterprise case” for LNG exports to Europe. He talked hydrogen as a substitute, and took Scholz to a hydrogen commerce present at Stephenville NL. The 2 then signed a “declaration of intent” to collaborate on the export of unpolluted Canadian hydrogen to Germany. Germany then purchased long-term LNG from the U.S. and Norway.
Canada intends to start out transport “inexperienced hydrogen,” produced by wind farms, to Germany by 2025. (We’re now as much as 11 “colors of hydrogen” relying on how the hydrogen is produced and the carbon depth of manufacturing processes. See the graphic under.)
The Miawpukek First Nation and an Australian firm have signed an MOU for a hydrogen undertaking on the Atlantic coast.
It will be developed in and across the Port aux Basques, St. George’s and Stephenville areas, producing virtually one million tonnes of inexperienced ammonia per 12 months. (Ammonia will be burned instantly in an inner combustion engine with no carbon emission, or transformed to electrical energy instantly in a gasoline cell, or cracked to offer hydrogen.)
Chief Misel Joe referred to as the Miapukek’s inclusion in inexperienced power initiatives “historic and transformational,” and cooperation within the spirit of reconciliation.
The Miawpukek Nation can also be working with two different inexperienced power builders on proposed wind to inexperienced hydrogen initiatives at three different websites. The Pabineau Nation can also be pursuing hydrogen growth in the identical area.
The Miawpukek and Pabineau will not be alone. In BC, the Fort Nelson First Nation and Hydrogen Naturally Inc. are working collectively to review the feasibility of a undertaking to provide as much as one million tonnes of “vibrant inexperienced” hydrogen a 12 months.
It will course of forest waste into “carbon-negative hydrogen.” The companions see their hydrogen going to utilities and heavy transportation sectors, and offsetting the equal of emissions from about 85,000 vehicles annually.
Australia’s Fortescue Future Industries, which signed the MOU with the Miawpukek, additionally has an MOU with the Lheidli T’enneh First Nation in BC to analyze the potential for producing inexperienced hydrogen.
(The Lheidli T’enneh additionally assist Hydra Power’s hydrogen manufacturing facility and refuelling station that’s being constructed at Prince George to serve the transportation trade. It’s billed because the world’s largest hydrogen refuelling station, and is to open in 2024.)
The Sundance Hydrogen undertaking in northeastern BC would produce hydrogen that it says could be added to the pure fuel within the present Enbridge/FortisBC transmission system. It will additionally companion with a First Nation greenhouse enterprise, Sundance Produce, that will use waste warmth from the hydrogen plant in Chetwynd.
At Prince Rupert, Ridley Terminals has in thoughts a hydrogen and ammonia pilot undertaking that will contain the Lax Kw’alaams Band and Metlakatla First Nation.
The Haisla and Nisga’a nations, creating LNG initiatives, have signed an settlement with the Midway First Nation within the Fort St. John space that addresses the unfavourable impacts natural-gas extraction has on Midway River territory. That might finally result in initiatives akin to carbon seize and storage — and hydrogen manufacturing.
And there are different hydrogen initiatives proposed or being explored in different provinces with First Nations partnerships or assist, such because the Frog Lake Nation in Alberta and the Saugeen Nation and the Six Nations of the Grand River in Ontario.
Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Hydrogen Activity Drive proposes that Canadian hydrogen has a wholesale market potential of as much as $100 billion a 12 months.
It recognized the Edmonton area as one of the best launch level for a pan-Canadian hydrogen economic system. And, with the Enoch Cree and Alexander First Nations, it’s working to develop a $1.6-billion hydrogen hub, with greater than 25 initiatives associated to the manufacturing, transportation and finish use of hydrogen.
Says Chief Billy Morin of the Enoch Cree: “Our purpose is to do proper by Mom Earth, but in addition discover a stability between making a living and creating enterprise and doing so in a sustainable means that honours Mom Earth and our conventional teachings. That’s what hydrogen represents.”
All in all, it’s going to be an extended haul to determine Canada as that “world-leading producer, consumer and exporter of unpolluted hydrogen, and related applied sciences.”
However at the least First Nations might be part of all of it.
(Posted right here 11 January 2023)