NZ set for first hydrogen energy facility

New Zealand will build its first hydrogen production and refuelling facility next year.

With a goal to commence operations by the end of 2019, the project will be built by Ports of Auckland with support from engineering and design company Arup.

The facility will be located at the Waitematā port and will produce hydrogen from tap water.

The process uses electrolysis to split water into hydrogen, which is then stored for later use, and oxygen, which is released into the air.

The facility will be used for fuel cell vehicles including buses, cars and port equipment.

Ports of Auckland will fund the project’s construction.

Arup Global Leader of Energy Systems Alan Thomson said hydrogen was becoming a progressively viable green fuel option.

“Hydrogen is increasingly seen as a critical part of the energy system, providing an effective means of delivering green energy into transport, particularly heavy duty vehicles, while also providing the means for NZ to export renewable energy around the world,” he said.

Ports of Auckland Chief Executive Tony Gibson said the only emission from the facility would be water.

 “If this trial is successful, the technology would have a very wide application,”he said.

“It could help Auckland and NZ towards energy self-sufficiency and our emission reduction goals. Trucks, trains and ferries could also run on hydrogen – something which is already being done overseas –which would be a significant benefit for the community. 

“Hydrogen powered vehicles are quieter and emit nothing more than clean water.”

For more information visit the Ports of Auckland website.

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