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Sinopec's first green hydrogen facility comes onstream with capacity of 20,000 TPA

The site of Sinopec's green hydrogen project in Inner Mongolia. Image: PRNewswire

The China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation, also known as Sinopec, has started production at its first green hydrogen plant, the Chinese news agency Xinhua said.

The plant, located in Kuqa city in Xinjiang province, uses solar power to electrolyse water and has capacity to produce up to 20,000 metric tons of hydrogen per year, the news agency said. Hydrogen generated at the plant will be supplied to Sinopec's Tahe refinery, where it will be used as fuel in place of hydrogen produced from natural gas.

Xinhua said the Kuqa city facility has capacity to store 210,000 cubic metres or hydrogen and transmission capacity of 28,000 cubic metres per hour.

Sinopec has another, larger green hydrogen project coming up in Inner Mongolia. Construction on the facility, which will have capacity for 30,000 metric tons of green hydrogen, started in February this year. Sinopec has called it a demonstration project, and said it would also build a 400 km pipeline to transport the hydrogen from Inner Mongolia to Beijing.

China has been racing to develop green hydrogen, produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen through electricity generated from renewable sources, to help reduce the country's carbon emissions. Last year, the government announced a target to produce 100,000 to 200,000 metric tons of green hydrogen a year by 2025.

China has been a large consumer of hydrogen. Data from the International Energy Agency shows the country accounted for almost 30 percent of the world's production of hydrogen in 2020, generating 33 million metric tons of the fuel. However, two-thirds of that was fuelled by coal, the IEA said. 

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