Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a $7 billion investment to launch seven Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs (H2Hubs) across the nation and accelerate the commercial-scale deployment of low-cost, clean hydrogen. Hydrogen is crucial to meeting President Biden’s climate and energy security goals, and this investment is part of his Investing in America agenda.
The H2Hubs are expected to collectively produce three million metric tons of hydrogen annually, reaching nearly a third of the 2030 U.S. production target and lowering emissions from hard-to-decarbonize industrial sectors that represent 30 percent of total U.S. carbon emissions.
Funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the seven H2Hubs will kickstart a national network of clean hydrogen producers, consumers, and connective infrastructure while supporting the production, storage, delivery, and end-use of clean hydrogen. The H2Hubs are expected to collectively produce three million metric tons of hydrogen annually, reaching nearly a third of the 2030 U.S. production target and lowering emissions from hard-to-decarbonize industrial sectors that represent 30 percent of total U.S. carbon emissions. Together, they will also reduce 25 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from end-uses each year—an amount roughly equivalent to combined annual emissions of 5.5 million gasoline-powered cars. The hubs are also expected to create and retain tens of thousands of jobs.
One of the largest investments in clean manufacturing and jobs in history, the Federal investment will be matched by recipients to leverage a total of nearly $50 billion to strengthen local economies, create and maintain high-quality jobs, and slash harmful emissions that jeopardize public health and pollute local ecosystems. In addition to positioning America to be a global leader in emerging clean energy industries, the H2Hubs will implement comprehensive local benefits and workforce proposals to support an equitable and inclusive clean energy future.
“Unlocking the full potential of hydrogen—a versatile fuel that can be made from almost any energy resource in virtually every part of the country—is crucial to achieving President Biden’s goal of American industry powered by American clean energy, ensuring less volatility and more affordable energy options for American families and businesses,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “With this historic investment, the Biden-Harris Administration is laying the foundation for a new, American-led industry that will propel the global clean energy transition while creating high quality jobs and delivering healthier communities in every pocket of the nation.”
Where The H2Hubs Are Headed
The seven projects selected for negotiation include:
- Appalachian Hydrogen Hub (Appalachian Regional Clean Hydrogen Hub (ARCH2); West Virginia, Ohio, Pennsylvania): The Appalachian Hydrogen Hub will leverage the region’s ample access to low-cost natural gas to produce low-cost clean hydrogen and permanently store the associated carbon emissions. The strategic location of this H2Hub and the development of hydrogen pipelines, multiple hydrogen fueling stations, and permanent CO2 storage also have the potential to drive down the cost of hydrogen distribution and storage. The Appalachian Hydrogen Hub is anticipated to bring quality job opportunities to workers in coal communities and create more than 21,000 direct jobs—including more than 18,000 in construction and more than 3,000 permanent jobs, helping ensure the Appalachian community benefits from the development and operation of the Hub. (Amount: up to $925 million)
- California Hydrogen Hub (Alliance for Renewable Clean Hydrogen Energy Systems (ARCHES); California): The California Hydrogen Hub will leverage the Golden State’s leadership in clean energy technology to produce hydrogen exclusively from renewable energy and biomass. It will provide a blueprint for decarbonizing public transportation, heavy duty trucking, and port operations—key emissions drivers in the state and sources of air pollution that are among the hardest to decarbonize. This H2Hub has committed to requiring Project Labor Agreements for all projects connected to the hub, which will expand opportunities for disadvantaged communities and create an expected 220,000 direct jobs—130,000 in construction jobs and 90,000 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $1.2 billion)
- Gulf Coast Hydrogen Hub (HyVelocity H2Hub; Texas): The Gulf Coast Hydrogen Hub will be centered in the Houston region, the traditional energy capital of the United States. It will help kickstart the clean hydrogen economy with its plans for large-scale hydrogen production using both natural gas with carbon capture and renewables-powered electrolysis, leveraging the Gulf Coast region’s abundant renewable energy and natural gas supply to drive down the cost of hydrogen—a crucial step to achieving market liftoff. This H2Hub is expected to create approximately 45,000 direct jobs—35,000 in construction jobs and 10,000 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $1.2 billion)
- Heartland Hydrogen Hub (Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota): The Heartland Hydrogen Hub will leverage the region’s abundant energy resources to help decarbonize the agricultural sector’s production of fertilizer, decrease the regional cost of clean hydrogen, and advance the use of clean hydrogen in electric generation and for cold climate space heating. It also plans to offer unique opportunities of equity ownership to tribal communities through an equity partnership and to local farmers and farmer co-ops through a private sector partnership that will allow local farmers to receive more competitive pricing for clean fertilizer. The Heartland Hydrogen Hub anticipates creating upwards of 3,880 direct jobs–3,067 in construction jobs and 703 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $925 million)
- Mid-Atlantic Hydrogen Hub (Mid-Atlantic Clean Hydrogen Hub (MACH2); Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey): The Mid-Atlantic Hydrogen Hub will help unlock hydrogen-driven decarbonization in the Mid-Atlantic while repurposing historic oil infrastructure and using existing rights-of-way. It plans to develop renewable hydrogen production facilities from renewable and nuclear electricity using both established and innovative electrolyzer technologies, where it can help reduce costs and drive further technology adoption. As part of its labor and workforce commitments to the community, the Mid-Atlantic Hydrogen Hub plans to negotiate Project Labor Agreements for all projects and provide close to $14 million for regional Workforce Development Boards that will serve as partners for community college training and pre-apprenticeships. This H2Hub anticipates creating 20,800 direct jobs—14,400 in construction jobs and 6,400 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $750 million)
- Midwest Hydrogen Hub (Midwest Alliance for Clean Hydrogen (MachH2); Illinois, Indiana, Michigan): Located in a key U.S. industrial and transportation corridor, the Midwest Hydrogen Hub will enable decarbonization through strategic hydrogen uses including steel and glass production, power generation, refining, heavy-duty transportation, and sustainable aviation fuel. This H2Hub plans to produce hydrogen by leveraging diverse and abundant energy sources, including renewable energy, natural gas, and low-cost nuclear energy. The Midwest Hydrogen Hub anticipates creating 13,600 direct jobs—12,100 in construction jobs and 1,500 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $1 billion)
- Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub (PNW H2; Washington, Oregon, Montana): The Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub plans to leverage the region’s abundant renewable resources to produce clean hydrogen exclusively via electrolysis. Its anticipated widescale use of electrolyzers will play a key role in driving down electrolyzer costs, making the technology more accessible to other producers, and reducing the cost of hydrogen production. The Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub has committed to negotiating Project Labor Agreements for all projects over $1 million and investing in joint labor-management/state-registered apprenticeship programs. This H2Hub is expected to create more than 10,000 direct jobs—8,050 in construction jobs and 350 permanent jobs. (Amount: up to $1 billion)
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DOE’s $7 billion of Federal investment in clean hydrogen will be met with the H2Hubs selectees’ cost share of more than $40 billion. Together with Inflation Reduction Act tax incentives and ongoing R&D efforts across the Federal government, the funding will help drive private sector investment in clean hydrogen, setting the nation on a course to hit critical long-term decarbonization objectives.
Each H2Hub was required to develop and ultimately implement a comprehensive Community Benefits Plan (CBP)—which will be informed by early and meaningful community and labor engagements in each region. Selection for award negotiations is not a commitment by DOE to issue an award or provide funding. Before funding is issued, DOE and the applicants will undergo a negotiation process, and DOE may cancel negotiations and rescind the selection for any reason during that time.