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Ørsted's Texas e-Methanol Project Receives Financial Support from U.S. DOE
Ørsted's Texas e-Methanol Project Receives Financial Support from U.S. DOE

Ørsted's Texas e-Methanol Project Receives Financial Support from U.S. DOE

  • 28-Mar-2024 12:53 PM
  • Journalist: Kim Chul Son

Ørsted, a prominent U.S. clean energy developer, has revealed its selection by the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations to initiate negotiations for potential federal funding of up to $100 million. This funding is intended to support the development of an advanced Power-to-X facility known as Star e-Methanol, located on the Texas Gulf Coast.

Ørsted's project stands among 33 initiatives spanning over 20 states, chosen to demonstrate commercial-scale decarbonization solutions imperative for transitioning energy-intensive industries towards achieving net-zero emissions. It represents a subset earmarked for funding, characterized by the DOE's Funding Opportunity Announcement as "world-leading, first-of-its-kind, or early-stage, full facility builds resulting in significant emissions reductions up to net-zero operations."

Melissa Peterson, Head of Onshore and P2X Americas at Ørsted, expressed enthusiasm regarding the DOE's support, emphasizing the crucial role of e-methanol production in facilitating rapid decarbonization across challenging-to-electrify sectors. She highlighted the potential for Ørsted's investments in Texas and the e-fuels industry to generate employment opportunities and foster economic growth, ultimately benefiting local communities.

The U.S. industrial and transportation sectors are responsible for approximately 65 percent of the country's greenhouse gas emissions. Leveraging its renewable power portfolio, Ørsted aims to produce green hydrogen and e-methanol to mitigate emissions from these sectors. The Star e-Methanol facility is projected to yield up to 300,000 metric tons of e-methanol annually. This versatile product can serve as a marine shipping fuel directly, or function as an input in sustainable aviation fuel or chemical production, sectors currently reliant on energy-intensive fossil fuels.

The Star e-Methanol project encompasses various components essential for achieving a net-neutral carbon solution. These include the establishment of new onshore wind and solar projects in Texas to power the electrolysis of green hydrogen, as well as the capture of biogenic carbon from an industrial facility. Subsequently, the captured biogenic carbon will be synthesized with green hydrogen to produce e-methanol. This process is anticipated to reduce CO2 emissions by over 90 percent compared to conventional marine fuel.

Moreover, the project is forecasted to generate 300 construction jobs and create 50 permanent positions for operations and maintenance. A significant portion of the workforce supporting the project will be stationed in Houston, where Ørsted inaugurated a new office in early 2024.

Furthermore, Ørsted has pledged to collaborate with the University of Houston to devise a comprehensive community benefits plan. This plan aims to incorporate initiatives for workforce development training, advancement of STEM education at educational institutions, and support for environmental justice initiatives, demonstrating Ørsted's commitment to sustainable development and community engagement.

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