Black & Veatch to support development of Mercury Renewables’ first-of-a-kind green H2 plant
A first-of-a-kind green hydrogen generation plant - on the border of Counties Mayo and Sligo, Ireland - has been announced by Mercury Renewables. To advance the project Mercury is drawing upon the hydrogen and renewable energy expertise of global engineering, consulting, and construction leader Black & Veatch.
Mercury is developing one of Ireland's first co-located onshore wind farms and hydrogen electrolysis plants. A 75-megawatt wind farm will power an electrolyser plant generating green hydrogen. Black & Veatch's initial role in the project has been the feasibility studies that inform all aspects of the hydrogen development.
"The abundance of renewable energy potential in Ireland means green hydrogen should play a significant role in regional and national cross-sector decarbonization. Projects like Firlough put Mercury at the vanguard of delivering Ireland's hydrogen economy," said Tim Bills-Everett of Mercury.
"Our business model is to combine local knowledge with international best practices in renewable energy development. For Firlough we also need proven hydrogen expertise. With a deep track record in both, Black & Veatch is our partner of choice."
Black & Veatch's early involvement has been to help Mercury understand which combination of electrolyser technology and size, as well as hydrogen storage and transport options – and water supply alternatives – best meets its business goals for the project. This is being achieved through the development of multiple scenario studies and conceptual site layouts.
"Hydrogen project developers and investors need confidence in the quality of the advice they receive. The most complete analysis will come from partners with expertise in hydrogen, renewable energy generation, and the complex interfaces between them that define projects like Firlough," said Youssef Merjaneh, Black & Veatch's Senior Vice President, Managing Director, Europe, Middle East & Africa.
Once the optimal configuration is identified, Black & Veatch will develop an outline design for the facility that is sympathetic to the local surroundings; and support engagement with the local community, as well as work to ensure the plant's safe operation.
Mercury Renewables has been developing renewable energy projects in Ireland since 2009. At Firlough, as with other projects, the company will endeavor to provide localized economic growth; using, where possible, local people, equipment, and services.
To support decarbonization initiatives, and the use of hydrogen as a part of decarbonization strategies, Black & Veatch in 2021 joined the Hydrogen Council and was appointed advisor to the U.S. Department of Commerce's Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee. The company's most recent hydrogen successes include selection by Mitsubishi Power Americas and Magnum Development, co-developers of what will be the world's largest industrial green hydrogen production and storage facility, to provide engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) services for that Advanced Clean Energy Storage project in Delta, Utah