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Governor Hochul Announces Multi-State Agreement Signed With Major Hydrogen Ecosystem Partners to Propose a Regional Clean Energy Hydrogen Hub

By March 25, 2022 18   min read  (3604 words)

March 25, 2022 |

Fuel Cells Works, Governor Hochul Announces Multi-State Agreement Signed With Major Hydrogen Ecosystem Partners to Propose a Regional Clean Energy Hydrogen Hub

Partners to Develop Proposal for Federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act Funding and Designation as Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that New York has signed a multi-state agreement, including with an initial group of 40 hydrogen ecosystem partners, to develop a proposal to become one of at least four regional clean energy hydrogen hubs designated through the federal Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The New York-led consortium includes Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Jersey – longstanding leaders in hydrogen and fuel cell innovation, and key neighbors on the I-95 corridor – as the first out-of-state partners to join the regional effort, opening the door for future state additions. Today’s announcement advances each States’ leadership in clean hydrogen infrastructure deployment and research and development, and supports New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent by 2050. Today’s announcement is a critical step in implementing Governor Hochul’s directive in her 2022 State of the State address to make New York State a green hydrogen hub.

“New York is proud to lead the way in forming bold partnerships to combat the existential threat of climate change,” Governor Hochul said. “Expanding the hydrogen market is critical to New York’s aggressive pursuit of clean-energy alternatives that will supercharge our economy and advance our climate goals. Coalitions like this one serve as a model to the nation on the collaboration that is required to meet this moment and bring us closer to a carbon-neutral future, and I thank Governors Lamont, Baker and Murphy for their partnership.”

“Connecticut has long been a leader in addressing the climate crisis and in researching and developing innovative technologies, and this exciting partnership unites both of those key leadership areas,” said Governor Ned Lamont. “We’re proud to share a commitment to climate leadership, fuel cell innovation, and clean energy jobs with our neighboring states, which will position us competitively to bring federal investment in clean hydrogen to our region.”

“The urgency of climate change and the implementation of our net-zero by 2050 strategy requires a comprehensive approach, which includes the research and deployment of technologies that will allow more cost-effective clean energy in the future,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Today’s announcement is a critical step for regional collaboration in integrating this clean energy resource into our existing climate strategy, and Massachusetts looks forward to working with our state partners on this initiative.”

“Clean hydrogen has the promise to expand New Jersey’s diverse clean energy portfolio,” said Governor Phil Murphy. “Clean hydrogen technology has the potential to improve net greenhouse gas emissions and harmful air pollutant impacts. Joining together with our regional partners will allow us to build a strong coalition for the development of clean hydrogen technology and cultivate economic growth and opportunity for New Jersey.”

Consortium partners have committed to collaborate with NYSERDA, NYPA, and ESD on proposal development to advance hydrogen projects. Partnering states will also coordinate with their respective state entities to help align the consortium’s efforts with each state’s climate and clean energy goals. These include Connecticut’s Global Warming Solutions Act goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050, Massachusetts’ goal to be carbon neutral by 2050 and New Jersey’s Global Warming Response Act goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050.

The consortium will also work to develop a proposal in response to the United States Department of Energy (DOE) Funding Opportunity Announcement, anticipated to launch in May 2022 with $8 billion in funding available.

By forming this partnership, New York presents a coordinated, multi-state approach to a hydrogen hub that connects the entire value chain of hydrogen producers, users, technology and equipment manufacturers, and the research and development community including national labs and universities.

In addition to Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New Jersey, the partners include:

  • Alliance Energy Group LLC
  • Alternative Aviation Fuels LLC
  • BAE Systems
  • Bloom Energy Corporation
  • CALSTART
  • Climate Jobs NY
  • Columbia University
  • Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc.
  • Cornell University
  • Cummins, Inc.
  • Daroga Power
  • Doosan Fuel Cell America, Inc.
  • Ecolectro, Inc.
  • Empire State Development (ESD)
  • FuelCell Energy
  • Invenergy Hydrogen LLC
  • Liberty Utilities (St. Lawrence Gas) Corp.
  • Long Island Power Authority (LIPA)
  • National Grid
  • National Offshore Wind Research and Development Consortium
  • New York Battery and Energy Storage Technology (NY-BEST)
  • New York Power Authority (NYPA)
  • New York University
  • Next Hydrogen Corporation
  • Nucor Steel Auburn, Inc.
  • Ohmium International
  • Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc.
  • Partnership Fund for New York City
  • Plug Power Inc.
  • Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT)
  • Standard Hydrogen Corporation
  • Stony Brook University / Advanced Energy Center (AERTC)
  • The City College of New York (CUNY)
  • The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
  • University at Buffalo, The State University of New York
  • Vermont Gas Systems (VGS)
  • WATT Fuel Cell Corporation

With the execution of these agreements, the partners will work together to:

  • Define the shared vision and plans for the regional hydrogen hub that can advance safe green hydrogen energy innovation and investment to address climate change, while improving the health, resiliency, and economic development of the region’s residents.
  • Advance a Hub proposal that makes climate and environmental justice central to its strategy, which will deliver opportunities and improved quality of life to under resourced areas across the region.
  • Perform research and analysis necessary to support the hub proposal and align on approach to quantifying greenhouse gas emissions reductions as a result of deploying this technology.
  • Develop a framework to ensure the ecosystem for innovation, production, infrastructure, and related workforce development is shared across all partner states.
  • Support environmentally responsible opportunities to develop hydrogen, in accordance with participating states’ policies.

New York and its partner states continue to seek additional public and private partners in the region and focus on coordinating the regional fuel cell innovation ecosystem. The coalition will seek to integrate offshore wind and solar PV into hydrogen production and deploy hydrogen for use in transportation, including for medium and heavy- duty vehicles, heavy industry, power generation and maritime applications or other appropriate uses consistent with decarbonization efforts.

Future consortium partners may include utilities, electrolyzer suppliers, fuel cell solution providers, transportation, fueling infrastructure and industrial partners, government agencies, community organizations, institutes of higher education, community colleges, vocational schools and non-profit organizations.

NYSERDA President and CEO Doreen M. Harris said, “This exciting collaboration is the first step in leveraging the federal hydrogen funding to establish a hydrogen hub. With our partners, New York State is positioning the region as a leader in the development of green hydrogen with a vision for how to provide a significant part of the national hydrogen infrastructure network while delivering benefits to vulnerable and disadvantaged communities by displacing local fossil fuel generation and creating clean energy job opportunities.”

New York Power Authority Interim President and CEO Justin E. Driscoll said, “New York’s ambitious goal to achieve a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040 requires a multi-faceted approach, unparalleled collaboration, and yet-to-be developed technologies and resources. We at the New York Power Authority are intrigued by the role that hydrogen may play in pushing us toward that decarbonized future and we are supporting green hydrogen firms like Plug Power at multiple locations throughout the state with low-cost hydropower. We, along with our esteemed colleagues joining in this multi-state Hydrogen Hub effort, understand the urgency for bold actions that will address climate change now, and NYPA, as always, is poised to help pave a new path leading us to a clean energy future.”

Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President & CEO-designate Hope Knight said, “New York’s climate and clean energy goals are made even stronger by this coalition of neighboring states and multi-sector partners, as well as making all of us more competitive in building the green economy. The proposed regional hydrogen hub will also help support the state’s ongoing efforts in tech innovation and workforce development as we all move together toward a clean energy future.”

Senator Charles Schumer said, “From Rochester to Western New York to the Capital Region to Long Island, New York is leading the nation in hydrogen energy production and today’s announcement of a multi-state partnership with major industry leaders shows how the Empire State has all the right ingredients to be the nation’s first ever Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub. I am proud to be leading the charge at the federal level so New York can fuel America’s clean energy future. When I led the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to passage with an unprecedented $9.5 billion federal investment to expand the hydrogen industry, I had innovative New York companies in mind and the potential to create thousands of good-paying clean energy jobs in communities that need it most. I have already personally advocated to Energy Secretary Granholm that New York is the natural choice to lead a Clean DOE Hydrogen Hub, and will continue to do all I can to secure this historic investment for the state. New York’s powerhouse workforce, top tier research institutions, and easy access to the renewable energy needed to produce green hydrogen makes it uniquely suited to supercharge and lead the federal government’s efforts to secure the nation’s spot as a global leader in clean hydrogen production to power our fight against climate change.”

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said, “New York has long been a leader in clean energy innovation. This partnership continues that tradition, bringing together the expertise of local government, research institutions, and the private sector to develop new technologies and build capacity to provide clean hydrogen energy to the region. I applaud Governor Hochul for this effort and will continue to work at the federal level to facilitate New York’s transition to clean and efficient energy sources. This partnership is an important step to reach New York’s 85 percent emission reduction target by 2050.”

Representative Jerrold Nadler said, “I am proud to have helped pass the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that has made this partnership possible. I applaud Governor Hochul for convening this multi-state partnership that will position New York as a nation-wide leader in clean hydrogen research and development. We urgently need new energy solutions to avert climate disaster and this consortium will help NY lead the development of these new solutions.”

Representative Gregory W. Meeks said, “I applaud Governor Hochul for leading a multi-state effort on climate change mitigation. New York continues to lead the nation with climate and clean energy initiatives as we work to rebuild our economy from COVID-19. I’m proud to have advocated for the Bipartisan Infrastructure and Jobs Act with my colleagues in Congress to make this transformational opportunity a reality and I look forward to its progress.”

Representative Brian Higgins said, “Federal funding included in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for the creation of Regional Hydrogen Hubs seeks to accelerate affordable hydrogen production technology in the United States through renewable energy sources. This collaborative approach, developed under the leadership of Governor Hochul, sets this initiative apart as a deserving recipient of resources included in this $8 billion program. I have every confidence that New York can help lead this federal effort which ultimately will reduce industrial carbon emissions and advance American competitiveness.”

Representative Yvette Clarke said, “This crucial partnership with key stakeholders is the right move that establishes New York’s leadership in protecting our environment, and it is a significant aggrandizement in our climate change efforts. Additionally, this multi-state partnership is a natural extension to the work I proudly championed in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, passed by Congress at the end of 2021, that created a National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) Formula Program to provide states with the necessary funding to build a network of electric vehicle charging stations along designated Alternative Fuel Corridors and other publicly accessible locations. With New York’s transportation sector accounting for a total of 47 percent of statewide energy-related CO2 emissions, this coalition with neighboring states has the potential to meaningfully and equitably transform our approach to tackling climate change. We must come together and work to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and Governor Kathy Hochul’s vision and proposal to form this green focused partnership to help reduce our carbon footprints is timely and highly commendable.”

Representative Paul Tonko said, “Clean hydrogen can play an important role in achieving our state and national climate goals. That’s why I fought hard to secure federal funding opportunities to help accelerate our region’s clean energy transition as part of last year’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. I applaud Governor Hochul and New York State for leading the way to organize a broad coalition of states, higher education institutions, and the private sector to ensure effective cooperation toward developing a regional hydrogen supply chain. I look forward to working together to seize this opportunity for energy innovation, job creation, and pollution reduction across our state and nation.”

Representative Tom Reed said, “We have always been supportive of innovation and development in clean energy technologies like hydrogen production. That is just one of the many reasons why we voted for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The creation of a regional hydrogen hub through this announced partnership would be an excellent opportunity for the investments made under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to help further us down the path to cleaner energy.”

Representative Kathleen Rice said, “It’s wonderful to see the funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act going towards this type of innovation and collaboration. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions is one of the most effective ways we can fight climate change, and I’m so glad that Governor Hochul is prioritizing the expansion of New York’s clean energy resources. I look forward to seeing what this regional coalition proposes.”

Representative Joe Morelle said, “As a member of the Congressional Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Caucus, I’m fighting to ensure we leave behind a healthy, clean, vibrant world for future generations. Rochester is already leading the way, and I’m grateful for Governor Hochul’s work to position New York as a global leader in clean hydrogen innovation.”

Representative Nicole Malliotakis said, “We can generate clean, renewable, and traditional energy right here in our state and across the region and we should be. Ramping up domestic energy production and diversifying our sources is a must to become energy independent, fuel the economy and protect our national security. This partnership brings together states, energy companies, universities, and transportation authorities to establish a regional hub to produce clean hydrogen power.”

Con Edison’s senior vice president, Customer Energy Solutions Leonard Singh said, “The Hydrogen Hubs reflect Con Edison’s commitment to invest in delivering a clean energy future for all New Yorkers. This is an innovative collaboration to reduce local carbon emissions as well as meeting the state’s clean-energy goals. Hydrogen is a resilient, sustainable clean energy and may be used towards reducing carbon emissions for customers served by our district steam system.”

Vice president and general manager of Liberty/NY Gas Mark Saltsman said, “Liberty is extremely excited to be part of the important effort led by Governor Hochul and NYSERDA to bring the fuel of the future to families and businesses in New York. Liberty appreciates the opportunity to demonstrate how the North Country can play a pivotal role in the hydrogen ecosystem. Clean hydrogen is essential for achieving New York’s ambitious decarbonization goals, and this proposal – with partners from all regions of the state – offers an opportunity to utilize locally-produced energy to power our industries, fuel our vehicles and heat our homes safely, reliably, affordably and sustainably.”

Executive Director of the National Offshore Wind R&D Consortium Carrie Cullen Hitt said, “This partnership formed by NYSERDA goes a long way to set the stage for a successful collaboration among key regional stakeholders, including offshore wind. With planned development, offshore wind can be a major contributor to the partnership and ultimately hydrogen production and storage.”

Chair of Stony Brook’s Advanced Energy Center Advisory Board Robert Catell said, “Stony Brook University and its Advanced Energy Research Technology Center look forward to supporting the New York State-wide hydrogen energy effort towards solving the technical challenges of this form of energy, in order to create a long-term, sustainable hydrogen-powered energy delivery system. Hydrogen has great potential and can help provide a clean energy source to meet the country’s clean energy goals, and New York is particularly well-positioned to lead the research necessary to develop these essential new technologies.”

Executive Director of Climate Jobs NY Jeff Vockrodt said, “Hydrogen will play an important role in New York’s clean-energy future, and the Northeast region has all of the right ingredients for a successful hydrogen hub. We look forward to helping this industry move forward in a way that contributes to emissions-reduction goals and creates good family-sustaining union jobs for New Yorkers and their communities.”

Co-Founder of Daroga Power David Matt said, “As a New York based developer, we’re proud to partner with NYSERDA to deliver on the State’s Hydrogen vision. Our New York project portfolio will support the growing demand for clean hydrogen and help achieve the State’s decarbonization goals.”

Chief Executive Officer for Plug Power Andy Marsh said, “Plug Power is excited to join this partnership with NYSERDA. As a New York-based global leader in turnkey green hydrogen solutions, we commend Governor Hochul, U.S. Senate Majority Leader Schumer, Senator Gillibrand, Congressman Tonko, and Congressman Morelle for their leadership, vision, and commitment to making the northeast a green hydrogen hub. We look forward to working together to help New York State and northeast partners achieve our clean energy and climate goals.”

President of National Grid New York Rudolph Wynter said, “National Grid is pleased to work in partnership with NYSERDA and other coalition partners to help develop a hydrogen hub in the Northeast. Advancing green hydrogen aligns with our overall efforts to decarbonize our energy networks, support the region’s clean energy goals and help accelerate the clean energy economy. We’ve already taken initial steps to bring hydrogen to space heating, recently announcing our HyGrid project to blend green hydrogen into our existing distribution network to help heat homes, and we are looking to do more through this great partnership.”

Chief Executive Officer of LIPA Thomas Falcone said, “Developing a hydrogen hub with our partners will be an important step to meeting our region’s future energy needs. With potential applications in transportation, industry, and the electric grid, clean hydrogen is an essential technology to help decarbonize our economy. Abundant access to offshore wind energy could make green hydrogen an especially important part of Long Island’s clean energy future.”

The New York Climate Action Council Draft Scoping Plan, released in December 2021, identifies low-carbon fuels such as hydrogen as an important component of a strategy to achieve the goals of the Climate Act in sectors that are challenging to electrify, such as transportation and heavy industry.

In addition, in recognition of hydrogen’s importance to New York State’s comprehensive decarbonization strategy, Governor Hochul announced in her 2022 State of the State address that the state will undertake several direct actions to support development of green hydrogen and invest in communities including:

  • The Department of Public Service, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and NYSERDA will develop a green hydrogen regulatory framework to measure emissions reduction and health benefits and will evaluate and develop codes and standards to ensure the safe operation of green hydrogen.
  • NYSERDA will develop a program to support locally-owned green hydrogen-powered microgrid solutions, which can help underserved communities replace polluting backup generators.
  • NYSERDA will release $27 million in NYSERDA Hydrogen Innovation funding to support product development, pilots, and demonstrations through competitive solicitations.
  • NYSERDA will propose a green hydrogen demonstration (study and/or engineering assessments) for district heating and cooling.
  • NYSERDA will expand on existing investments and bring together key stakeholders and current hydrogen users, including chip fabrication, methanol production, and warehouse material handling.
  • NYSERDA will launch a Green Hydrogen Prize Program to support green hydrogen firms seeking to expand in New York State.

For more information on hydrogen activities in New York State, please visit NYSERDA’s website.

New York State’s Nation-Leading Climate Act

New York State’s nation-leading climate agenda is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York State recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieve its mandated goal of a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economy wide carbon neutrality. It builds on New York’s unprecedented investments to ramp-up clean energy including over $33 billion in 102 large-scale renewable and transmission projects across the state, $6.8 billion to reduce buildings emissions, $1.8 billion to scale up solar, more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives, and over $1.6 billion in NY Green Bank commitments. Combined, these investments are supporting nearly 158,000 jobs in New York’s clean energy sector in 2020, a 2,100 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011 and a commitment to develop 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035. Under the Climate Act, New York will build on this progress and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050, while ensuring that at least 35 percent with a goal of 40 percent of the benefits of clean energy investments are directed to disadvantaged communities, and advance progress towards the state’s 2025 energy efficiency target of reducing on-site energy consumption by 185 trillion BTUs of end-use energy savings.

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