[H2] Innovation Experience Microgrid Produces and Uses Renewable Hydrogen for the First Time at Demonstration Project in Downey
LOS ANGELES, Sept. 26, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) today announced that its [H2] Innovation Experience in Downey is now using renewable hydrogen that is produced onsite. The project will demonstrate the resiliency and reliability of a renewable hydrogen microgrid that can power neighborhoods – just in time to kick off National Clean Energy Week.
The [H2] Innovation Experience features a nearly 2,000 square-foot home that can use reliable and clean hydrogen 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, by drawing power from solar panels on sunny days and converting excess energy into renewable hydrogen, which can be stored and then converted back into electricity, as needed, via an on-site hydrogen fuel cell. Hydrogen will also be blended with natural gas and used in the home's tank-less water heater, clothes dryer, and gas stove, fireplace and BBQ grill. The home is being constructed to LEED Platinum standards.
The project's electrolyzer, which uses solar power to split water, has now produced its first full kilogram of renewable hydrogen – the first ever produced by SoCalGas -- which is intended to power a fuel cell to provide power when solar isn't available. One kilogram of hydrogen, roughly equivalent to a gallon of gasoline, emits only water as a byproduct. The limited production of hydrogen at this site as part of this demonstration project is specifically intended to show the microgrid's effectiveness in terms of reliability and resiliency.
"The production of the first kilogram of renewable hydrogen by SoCalGas is a key milestone as we prepare to welcome visitors to our [H2] Innovation Experience in the coming months," said Neil Navin, Vice President of Clean Energy Innovations at SoCalGas. "This project shows the essential role clean fuels like renewable hydrogen can play in meeting California's clean energy and resiliency goals and highlights our progress toward making net zero a reality. And projects like this, along with efforts like those to develop a statewide hydrogen blending standard, have the potential to drive down the costs of renewable hydrogen, making it a valuable tool to help decarbonize California."
"On behalf of my council colleagues and myself, I would like to congratulate SoCalGas on this momentous achievement," added Downey Mayor Blanca Pacheco. "The use of green hydrogen could greatly reduce carbon emissions and help in our fight against climate change. By building on the benefits of using hydrogen generated by renewable energy, our city can continue to be at the forefront of technology and environmental sustainability."
SoCalGas is at the forefront of sustainability having announced its aim to have net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045. It is the first large natural gas utility in the United States to do so.
SoCalGas has been at the forefront of clean energy innovation and is aggressively working to develop a suite of tools to help with those decarbonization efforts, particularly in hard-to-electrify sectors: hydrogen, hydrogen blending, renewable natural gas and carbon management, to name some of the clean energy tools being developed and employed as part of its overall clean energy strategy.
That strategy is already in full motion. Earlier this month, SoCalGas partnered with UCI on a proposal to demonstrate how hydrogen can be safely blended into existing natural gas infrastructure on the university's campus and take California a step closer to establishing a statewide injection standard for renewable hydrogen. Additionally, in February, the company proposed developing the Angeles Link, a dedicated green hydrogen energy infrastructure system for delivering clean reliable energy to the Los Angeles Basin to serve hard to electrify sectors of the economy like electric generation, heavy-duty transportation, and heavy industry and manufacturing.
SoCalGas research has shown that with clean fuels like renewable natural gas and hydrogen, coupled with carbon management, California can reach 100% net zero goals more affordably, more equitably and with less risk of power disruptions, customer conversion barriers, and technological limitations.
For more information on the [H2] Innovation Experience, click here.
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 21.8 million consumers across 24,000 square miles of Central and Southern California. 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 company in America. In support of that mission, SoCalGas aspires to have net-zero greenhouse gas emissions 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.
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Sempra Infrastructure, Sempra Texas, Sempra Mexico, 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 Texas, Sempra Mexico, Sempra Texas Utilities, Oncor and IEnova are not regulated by the CPUC.
SOURCE Southern California Gas Company