The project demonstrates the potential to displace traditional natural gas with fuels like hydrogen, which can be made from clean renewable sources, and foster the many environmental and economic benefits of a hydrogen economy
PASADENA, Calif., Dec. 14, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) and Bloom Energy (NYSE: BE), today announced the powering of a portion of Caltech's grid with an innovative hydrogen project that demonstrates how hydrogen could potentially offer a strong solution for long-duration clean energy storage and dispatchable power generation.
The project showcases how leveraging existing infrastructure with electrolyzers and fuel cell technology may be able to create microgrids that deliver resilient power and can help to safeguard businesses, communities, and campuses from power disruptions. If developed at scale, this technology may help further California Governor Gavin Newsom's recent strategic initiatives to develop a hydrogen economy.
"It is becoming clearer with each passing day that hydrogen can and should play a key role in California's efforts to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels," said Senator Bob Archuleta, Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Hydrogen Energy. "Moreover, I am excited to see Caltech, one of our nation's leading institutions, serving as a testbed for the use of hydrogen with this new and innovative technology on their campus."
"This collaborative effort represents a significant step in harnessing hydrogen as a resilient, clean energy solution that's in line with Governor Newsom's vision for California," said Maryam Brown, President at SoCalGas. "Integrating cutting-edge electrolyzers and fuel cell technology into existing infrastructure demonstrates the potential for building robust microgrids, enhancing power resiliency for businesses, communities and campuses at scale."
"We commend Governor Newsom and SoCalGas for their vision and leadership on the important work to develop the hydrogen economy," said Greg Cameron, President and Chief Financial Officer at Bloom Energy. "As a California manufacturer of Bloom Electrolyzers®, we are uniquely positioned to advance the goals of delivering clean and reliable energy in a post-carbon economy. We are working on a number of major opportunities to deliver our electrolyzers to customers to help grow hydrogen as a significant energy source in the U.S. and internationally."
This project takes water from Caltech's service line and runs it through Bloom Energy's solid oxide electrolyzer, which uses grid energy to create hydrogen. The resulting hydrogen is injected into Caltech's natural gas infrastructure upstream of Bloom Energy fuel cells, creating up to a 20% blend of hydrogen and natural gas. All of this fuel blend is then converted into electricity with Bloom Energy's fuel cells, and the electricity is then distributed for use on campus.
Blending hydrogen into natural gas infrastructure statewide – which could help reduce dependence on fossil fuels and ultimately drive down hydrogen costs by scaling production – first requires developing a hydrogen injection standard. The global hydrogen economy is projected to potentially produce as much as 80 gigatons of carbon abatement by 2050, which represents approximately 11% of required cumulative emissions reductions.1
SoCalGas is working to help develop a state hydrogen blending standard by proposing pilot projects for approval by the CPUC. These projects could help to better understand how clean fuels like clean renewable hydrogen could be delivered through California's natural gas system.
Just this year, SoCalGas unveiled its award winning H2 Innovation Experience, a state-of-the-art demonstration project designed to show the potential resiliency and reliability of a hydrogen microgrid.
When coupled with renewable energy, clean hydrogen could help facilitate a scalable, resilient and decarbonized energy system. SoCalGas is working to help shape California's 21st century energy system through investments in hydrogen, renewable natural gas, fuel cells and carbon management.
For more information about SoCalGas' hydrogen innovation, visit http://socalgas.com/hydrogen
Headquartered in Los Angeles, SoCalGas® is the largest gas distribution utility in the United States. SoCalGas delivers affordable, reliable, and increasingly renewable gas service to over 21 million consumers across 24,000 square miles of Central and Southern California. We believe gas delivered through the company's pipelines will continue to play a key role in California's clean energy transition—providing electric grid reliability and supporting wind and solar energy deployment.
SoCalGas' mission is to build the cleanest, safest and most innovative energy infrastructure company in America. In support of that mission, SoCalGas aspires to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in its operations and delivery of energy by 2045 and to replacing 20 percent of its traditional natural gas supply to core customers with renewable natural gas (RNG) by 2030. Renewable natural gas is made from waste created by landfills and wastewater treatment plants. SoCalGas is also committed to investing in its gas delivery infrastructure while keeping bills affordable for customers. SoCalGas is a subsidiary of Sempra (NYSE: SRE), an energy infrastructure company based in San Diego.
About Bloom Energy
Bloom Energy empowers businesses and communities to responsibly take charge of their energy. The company's leading solid oxide platform for distributed generation of electricity and hydrogen is changing the future of energy. Fortune 100 companies around the world turn to Bloom Energy as a trusted partner to deliver lower carbon energy today and a net-zero future. For more information, visit www.bloomenergy.com [bloomenergy.com].
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These risks and uncertainties are further discussed in the reports that the company has filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These reports are available through the EDGAR system free-of-charge on the SEC's website, www.sec.gov, and on Sempra's website, www.sempra.com. Investors should not rely unduly on any forward-looking statements.
Sempra Infrastructure, Sempra Infrastructure Partners, Sempra Texas, Sempra Texas Utilities, Oncor Electric Delivery Company LLC (Oncor) and Infraestructura Energética Nova, S.A.P.I. de C.V. (IEnova) are not the same companies as the California utilities, San Diego Gas & Electric Company or Southern California Gas Company, and Sempra Infrastructure, Sempra Infrastructure Partners, Sempra Texas, Sempra Mexico, Sempra Texas Utilities, Oncor and IEnova are not regulated by the CPUC.
SOURCE Southern California Gas Company