As efforts to establish a regional hydrogen hub in the Intermountain West continue, the Western Inter-States Hydrogen Hub (WISHH) coalition released a Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) Thursday, August 25 to solicit input from key stakeholders. The RFEI provides an avenue for stakeholders such as industry leaders, elected officials, community groups, tribes, and the general public to provide vital input in creating a regional clean hydrogen hub across Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming.
In addition, the Rocky Mountain Alliance for Next Generation Energy (RANGE) launched a website that provides information about WISHH and its efforts to establish this hydrogen hub across the four-state region. The website also creates a portal for interested parties and stakeholders to respond to the RFEI and offer information on how they could participate in the regional hydrogen hub.
On Feb. 23, 2022, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to create the WISHH coalition. WISHH is coordinating and developing an application for the regional clean hydrogen hub funding allocated in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
“A regional hydrogen hub requires coordination not only among states, but among our valuable stakeholders as well,” said New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. “New Mexico is ready to engage with partners to build a clean hydrogen future that creates sustainable jobs and helps us reach our climate goals.”
“Colorado is excited to be part of this nation-leading, cutting-edge regional coalition to boost hydrogen power to help us reach our goals to save people money, reduce pollution, and create the good-paying jobs of the future right here. Our innovative use of low carbon hydrogen will help the state achieve our goals–while cutting emissions from industry and transportation,” said Colorado Governor Jared Polis.
“Utah’s pioneering spirit has always served us well, and as we explore new technologies for diversifying our energy sector, like hydrogen, we will ensure our state always has affordable and reliable energy,” said Governor Spencer Cox. “However, these efforts do not advance alone – industry partners and a talented workforce make these big ideas feasible, and we’re certain Utah can find that industry and that talent.”
“Hydrogen projects will not be developed without major investment and buy-in from private companies. While our four states have worked out the parameters of our joint efforts, it is now time to find out what projects the public and industry will find feasible,” said Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon. “Wyoming has an all-of-the-above, net zero energy strategy and these partnerships will support that goal.”
Website visitors can find details about WISHH members, highlights on the progress of developing the hub, and express their interest in their hub involvement through the RFEI. The information submitted through the RFEI will be used to coordinate upcoming efforts in the four states, including the application for the Department of Energy’s Regional Hydrogen Hubs funding, expected to be submitted this fall.
“Given the high levels of interest in the nation’s rapidly growing hydrogen sector, the Request for Expression of Interest will serve as a critical avenue for stakeholder input to WISHH and RANGE.” said Anja Bendel, Program Director for WISHH. “We encourage anyone looking to get involved or provide input in this effort to utilize this site.”
Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming are uniquely qualified and situated to serve as a hydrogen hub. These states have the potential to create a thriving hydrogen economy given the presence of high-quality wind, solar, biomass, and other energy resources. They also possess a sophisticated oil and natural gas industry, robust energy-transportation infrastructure, and an established carbon management infrastructure with both favorable underlying geologies and regulatory structures.
RANGE brings together expertise and coordination from across the region with more than 75 leading experts organized into workgroups supporting the mission of WISHH. This is done by providing expertise in technical analysis and communication, as well as industry and stakeholder engagement. The goal of this group is to build a sustainable hydrogen economy that continues to drive low-carbon energy, creates good quality jobs, and forms close partnerships between communities, government, and industry throughout our four states.