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Shell starts up hydrogen electrolyser in China with 20 MW production capacity

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28 January 2022

Shell has started operations at the power-to-hydrogen electrolyser in Zhangjiakou, a joint venture between Shell China and Zhangjiakou City Transport Construction Investment Holding Group Co. Ltd.

One of the world’s largest hydrogen electrolysers¹ has today started production of green hydrogen in Zhangjiakou, Hebei Province, China. The electrolyser will provide about half of the total green hydrogen supply for fuel cell vehicles at the Zhangjiakou competition zone during the Winter Olympic Games, set to begin on February 4, 2022.

"The electrolyser is the largest in our portfolio to date and is in line with Shell’s Powering Progress strategy, which includes plans to build on our leading position in hydrogen,” said Wael Sawan, Shell’s Integrated Gas, Renewable and Energy Solutions Director. "We see opportunities across the hydrogen supply chain in China, including its production, storage and shipping. We want to be the trusted partner for our customers from different sectors as we help them decarbonise in China.”

The project is part of a joint venture between Shell China and Zhangjiakou City Transport Construction Investment Holding Group Co. Ltd, formed in November 2020. The 20 megawatts (MW) power-to-hydrogen electrolyser and hydrogen refuelling stations in Zhangjiakou are phase 1 of the joint venture. The companies have plans to scale up to 60 MW in the next two years in phase 2.

Taking only 13 months to complete, this is Shell’s first commercial hydrogen development project in China. Utilising onshore wind power, the project will initially supply green hydrogen to fuel a fleet of more than 600 fuel cell vehicles at the Zhangjiakou competition zone during the Winter Olympic Games. After that, the hydrogen will be used for public and commercial transport in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, helping to decarbonise its mobility sector. 

"The hydrogen industry is critical for Zhangjiakou’s transition to low-carbon energy and to achieve the city’s carbon peak and carbon neutrality targets. The recent approval of the Hebei Fuel Cell Vehicle Demonstration City Cluster, which is led by our city, will also accelerate the development of the hydrogen industry in our city,” said Bai Jing, Director, Zhangjiakou Municipal Development and Reform Commission. "This project will help secure hydrogen supply for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics and make it a green one while contribute to the development of hydrogen industry in the city and the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.”

"We are glad to contribute to China’s progress towards its commitment for a carbon-neutral Olympic Games, and in the longer term for its 2030 and 2060 carbon targets,” said Jason Wong, Executive Chairman of Shell Companies in China. "With project phase 2 expansion plans and through partnerships with the local government and businesses, we will support the development of a low-carbon energy system and low-carbon transport system in Zhangjiakou and the wider Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.” 

¹Measured by production capacity, the world’s largest hydrogen electrolyser is 30MW operated by Baofeng Energy in China, while the second largest is a 20MW one operated by Air Liquide in Canada. Shell’s Zhangjiakou Integrated Green Hydrogen Hub project is one of only three commercial-scale electrolysers in China today, alongside the 30 MW one operated by Baofeng Energy and a 10MW electrolyser operated by HyPower in Hebei province.