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WA: Net-Zero Glass and Solar Panels

how-does-hydrogen-energy-work

Production of net-zero glass and solar panels using renewable hydrogen may soon become a reality in Western Australia (WA). The news comes as Xodus looks to gain funds for a 1GW electrolyser project. 

Xodus, a global energy consulting company based in Scotland, is now working on project MercurHy, a green hydrogen production plant that will be built in WA.

The Project MercurHy in WA

The project will enable the production of green hydrogen at an industrial scale that will decarbonise new industries, specifically regarding the supply and demand of renewable energy. 

According to Xodus Managing Director Stephen Swindell, “The aim of this project is to push the supply chain forward, reduce technology risks and achieve cost reductions.”

Project MercurHy will undergo three phases: 

  • Phase 1: 150 MW
  • Phase 2: 500 MW
  • Phase 3: 1,000 MW

The three-phase approach will allow the market to mature, which will cause electrolyser prices to fall. 

Xodus also has a deal with ASX-listed resource outfit VRX Silica, which will explore the future supply of renewable hydrogen to power the company’s silica sand projects and possible manufacturing. 

According to VRX Silica, “The supply of renewable hydrogen to power such glass-manufacturing facilities could potentially lead to the production of net-zero glass.”

A glass-making facility in Western Australia may trigger a significant industry investment, which will lead to long-term production and more permanent jobs in WA. 

What are the available renewable energy resources in WA?

The Mid-West region of WA is abundant in renewable energy resources, like wind farms and electrical infrastructure. Xodus has the support of the state government and other off-takers to establish a new green industry in the region. 

Project MercurHy will be an opportunity for economic development for the region as it will unlock and decarbonise new industries. 

According to Stephen Swindell, the Managing Director at Xodus, “As we accelerate the global transition to a low carbon economy, the investment landscape is becoming more and more complex as markets, policies, and regulations also undergo rapid change. Upscaling of the hydrogen sector is still in its infancy and the local supply chains must be developed further to maximise opportunities.”

Glass production requires a lot of energy, and switching to renewable hydrogen can make net-zero glass production possible. 

The non-binding Memorandum Of Understanding (MOU) of VRX Silica limited and Xodus is until June 30, 2023, but both companies can extend them for an additional year if they want to. 

All about WA’s renewable hydrogen strategy

WA’s strategy was launched in 2019 to harness the state’s competitiveness when it comes to renewable sources. The government is investing almost $90 million to drive the development of a renewable hydrogen industry in the state. 

Last year, WA was described by BP as “an ideal pace” for the development of “large scale renewable energy assets that can, in turn, produce green hydrogen and/or green ammonia for cosmetic and export markets.”

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