Hydrogen production project promotes green energy transition in Viet Nam

Friday, Oct 29, 2021 09:22

Green hydrogen is produced through water electrolysis, in which electricity is used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. — Source: https://www.ontario.ca/page/low-carbon-hydrogen

The Viet Nam Energy Association has announced the country's first hydrogen investment project, an important step in transiting to greener energy supplies. 

Viet Nam is promoting a wider sustainable energy transition and encouraging the development of hydrogen fuel, as well as a reduction in carbon emissions.

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), by 2030, total hydrogen production will reach 200 metric tons (mt). Of this, 70 per cent will be produced from low-carbon technologies (electrolysis or fossil fuels with carbon capture, use and storage). Hydrogen production will reach 500 mt by 2050, practically all of which will come from low-carbon technologies. Reaching these goals requires electrolysis capacity to increase from 0.3 GW today to around 850 gigawatts (GW) by 2030, and almost 3,600 GW by 2050.

Green hydrogen is produced through water electrolysis, in which electricity is used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. Hydrogen produced from electrolysis has many advantages as it can be stored in liquified gas, making it suitable for many sectors due to its ease of storage and transport.

The IEA sees hydrogen as playing a key role in the future of clean, safe and sustainable energy. Hydrogen demand in 2020 was around 90 mt, almost all of which was for refining and industrial applications. Most of this was produced from fossil fuels (natural gas and coal), resulting in close to 900 mt of CO2 emissions.  

To reduce greenhouse emissions from the production of hydrogen, many countries are studying low-carbon hydrogen production technologies. One of the most interesting is electrolysis, biomass gasification and steam methane reforming.

On October 4, 2021, a group of investors, including Enterprize Energy Group (UK – Singapore), proposed an investment project in Thang Long Wind 2 (TLW2) to produce hydrogen from seawater electrolysis, for export to South Korea, Japan and Singapore. Utilising the existing Thang Long Offshore Wind Farm project off Binh Thuan Province, the potential energy amassed is 2,000 megawatts (MW) for a total investment cost of US$5 billion. The project is expected to commence in 2022.

This will be the first seawater electrolysis hydrogen production project in Viet Nam. It has an ideal location inside an international marine route and is a short distance from export markets in Japan, South Korea and Singapore. This project could open the door to further exploitation of offshore wind sites and lay the foundation for green hydrogen economy development in Viet Nam. In addition, TLW2 will take advantage of the qualifications and experience of local contractors like PTSC and Vietsovpetro to fabricate and process sea facilities for the project.

TLW2 and similar projects fit in with the green economy and growth development trend of Viet Nam. Moving towards a greener economy will raise the position and prestige of Viet Nam in the international arena, particularly as the United Nations Summit on Climate change (COP26) is to be held this November, in Glasgow, Scotland.

In 2019, only France, Japan and South Korea had announced specific strategies to develop and use hydrogen as a clean fuel source. Today, 17 governments have released hydrogen strategies, more than 20 governments have publicly announced they are working to develop strategies, and numerous companies are seeking to tap into hydrogen business opportunities.

Viet Nam is well aware of the importance of developing renewable energy sources that are economical, efficient and sustainable. This roadmap is fully in line with Resolution No55-NQ/TW of Politburo on research, formulation and encouragement of hydrogen energy. Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh has already approved the National Strategy on green growth in the period of 2021-30, vision to 2050 in Decision No1658 dated October 1. It directs the Ministry of Industry and Trade to lead the development of hydrogen at offshore wind sites. — VNS

Comments (0)