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Singapore launches national hydrogen plan

Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) has published plans to grow its hydrogen industry, as part of its target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. 

The plan (1.84MB/30-page) sets out five ways to explore and grow opportunities for hydrogen in Singapore: experimenting with commercial ready hydrogen technologies; conducting research and development to push forward hydrogen technologies; forming international collaborations for low-carbon hydrogen supply chains; developing hydrogen related infrastructure to import, store and for power generation; and supporting workforce training.

Energy expert William Stroll of Pinsent Masons MPillay, the Singapore joint law venture between MPillay and Pinsent Masons said: “Governments around the world are exploring how hydrogen may be utilised to achieve a low carbon economy. With its limited land space other renewable energy technologies are not as viable in Singapore as they are in other countries, and so hydrogen presents a real opportunity for Singapore to meet its COP 26 target for reaching net zero by 2050.”

“We have seen large projects in other countries for the generation of hydrogen, but it is the supply chain and end use case that the Singapore MTI hydrogen plan is looking at, and which is what makes it very exciting. We have seen recent announcements of ‘hydrogen-ready’ combined cycle power plant (CCGT) to be developed in Singapore and these types of projects, as well as the activities presented in the Singapore hydrogen plan, are exactly what is needed to start the generation of a true hydrogen economy,” he said.

The Singapore MTI plans to release an expression of interest for commercial projects relating to ammonia power generation, to include developing the ammonia supply chains required to support marine bunkering needs. The MTI also wants to assess the viability of ammonia both as a hydrogen carrier as well as a direct fuel and is looking at the regulations required to support the growth and development of the hydrogen economy.

Singapore’s government has allocated S$129 million for stage 2 of its Low Carbon Energy Research (LECR) programme, which follows its first allocation of S$55m stage 1 funding in October 2021. The government aims to solve the technological problems associated with importing, handling and utilising hydrogen through research.

Planned actions to benefit the low carbon hydrogen supply chain include progressing the development of a ‘certification of origin’ methodology to make sure that it is operational across jurisdictions; and building a trading and financing ecosystem for low carbon hydrogen global trade.

According to a statement by MTI, hydrogen could supply up to half of Singapore’s power needs by 2050. Hydrogen and hydrogen-derived fuels are potential alternatives to fossil fuels in the maritime and aviation sectors.

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