The United States Department of Energy has selected the Mid-Atlantic Clean Hydrogen Hub for award negotiations of up to $750 million in funding from the Hydrogen Hubs program. This program aims to create a network of hydrogen producers, consumers, and local infrastructure. The territory covered by the Mid-Atlantic Clean Hydrogen Hub includes Delaware, southeastern Pennsylvania, and south Jersey.
As part of the program, all projects will be constructed with project labor agreements, and the clean hydrogen production will come from renewable energy, nuclear energy, and capturing wastewater emissions. The region is already home to several Delaware companies with a presence in the hydrogen industry. Bloom Energy is assembling hydrogen producing electrolyzers, W.L Gore and Chemours are producing membranes, Air Liquide is conducting research and development work, and the University of Delaware has conducted research and operated a hydrogen-fueled bus.
Funded by President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the Hydrogen Hubs aim to accelerate the commercial-scale deployment of clean hydrogen as a form of energy storage and a way to decarbonize heavy industry and transportation. It is estimated that this initiative could reduce 25 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year, which is equivalent to the combined annual emissions of 5.5 million gasoline-powered cars. Furthermore, it has the potential to create tens of thousands of jobs across the country.
Collin O’Mara, Chair of MACH2 and President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, expressed his gratitude for this historic federal investment. He stated, “The Mid-Atlantic Clean Hydrogen Hub will play an essential role in advancing our region’s economic and environmental goals by creating more than twenty thousand well-paying jobs in the production, delivery, and use of zero-emission green and pink hydrogen to repower our region’s industrial facilities, transportation systems, and agriculture sectors.”
The selection of MACH2 will result in a substantial investment in research and development and workforce development through partnerships with local universities and organizations such as the University of Delaware, Delaware State University, Delaware Technology & Community College, University of Pennsylvania, Cheyney University, Rowan University, and others. This collaboration aims to provide new educational and research opportunities for students and grow the region’s skilled workforce for clean-hydrogen-related jobs.
Delaware Governor John Carney expressed excitement about the federal funding, stating, “This is a big deal. Hydrogen is a clean fuel of the future, one of the ways we can pollute less. Our region has been chosen for a federal infusion of hundreds of millions of dollars that will create thousands of jobs and show how hydrogen can be made, transported, and used in a real-world way.”
Similarly, Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro highlighted the significance of this investment, positioning Pennsylvania as a leader in the country’s clean energy future. He expressed gratitude to President Biden, Senators Casey and Fetterman, and Mayor Kenney for their support in securing this win for the Commonwealth.
Overall, the selection of the Mid-Atlantic Clean Hydrogen Hub for funding under the Hydrogen Hubs program represents a significant step towards achieving the goals of decarbonization and creating a sustainable energy future. With the potential to create thousands of jobs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, this initiative highlights the importance of hydrogen as a clean and efficient energy source.