Napier Port explores green hydrogen solutions
Our Port and its sustainability commitment is a critical part of our farm to plate story.
Added one year ago
The HB Future Farming Trust’s focus is on what happens on farm, in the vineyard, in the orchard, to the soil. That said, most of what we produce in Hawke’s Bay is exported. And so the journey from farm to plate – and the story around that journey – is critically important to the well-being of our farming community, because that story increasingly matters to our overseas customers.
And that makes relevant to us the commitment around sustainability made by our food (and fibre) gateway, Napier Port, a Trust Sponsor.
In early November, Napier Port announced it would explore green hydrogen solutions to help drive its decarbonisation goals.
New Zealand company Hiringa Energy was chosen for the project, which will examine opportunities for hydrogen to decarbonise the port’s operations and logistics.
Michel de Vos, general manager assets and infrastructure and the port’s emissions reduction strategy project lead, says the partnership is still in its early stages, with the just completed memorandum of understanding being the starting point.
“Long term we see this initiative as something we partner closely with others on to progress, helping our region and other businesses as they look to decarbonise.”
“Green” hydrogen is produced by using renewable electricity to split water into oxygen and hydrogen. This process – electrolysis – is 100% renewable and emission free. No carbon is involved.
The partnership’s first step will be to work in the port’s own patch, determining the feasibility of high-capacity green hydrogen production and refuelling capabilities on-port, and support the potential for renewable energy generation to electrify port operations.
Napier Port has committed to net zero emissions by 2050; it will build the infrastructure that will support a reliable hydrogen supply network in New Zealand and help drive adoption of this clean and safe fuel by identifying other potential users of hydrogen across the region.
Port CEO Todd Dawson says: “Renewable energy has an essential role to play and we want to use our position to influence others and help drive progress both inside and outside our port gates.
”Green hydrogen, represents one promising decarbonisation pathway for the port’s operations and heavy equipment diesel fleet.
“We will likely need a mix of electric and other alternative fuel solutions to decarbonise, with hydrogen providing for fast refuelling, a greater range than electric batteries, and the potential to be produced and stored onsite.
“We’re already exploring what hydrogen-powered equipment alternatives are on the horizon, whether that be trucks and forklifts or potentially marine fleet solutions such as tugs,” says Dawson.
- It is already playing a significant role in unlocking the massive potential of the world’s renewable sector;
- It is an abundant, energy-rich resource that can be created from water and its only emission is water vapour;
- Safety profile – hydrogen has been manufactured and used for over a hundred years;
- Increasing global adoption of hydrogen as a fuel;
- Technological advances in the transportation, storage and use of hydrogen make it just as safe to use as any other combustible fuel;
- Hydrogen is clean – it has no colour or odour and is non-toxic and environmentally benign;
- Hydrogen is a store of energy, like a battery – hydrogen can be produced when the natural resource is available and stored for when it is needed. It can also support the electricity grid, providing demand control during peak times, and enabling more efficient use of electrical infrastructure.
Photo: Hydrogen fuel cell powered container stacker is the kind of equipment the Port will explore.
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