Mitsui & Co, RWE, and the Port of Tilbury have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to construct two green hydrogen projects at the Port of Tilbury in Essex, UK. The partnership intends to assist the UK in reaching net-zero emissions by 2050. The first project entails a modest proof-of-concept demonstrator project that produces green hydrogen, which will be used to decarbonise port equipment from fossil fuels to hydrogen in order to reduce carbon emissions. This project will serve as a demonstration of the possibilities and benefits of using hydrogen as an alternative fuel source.

In accordance with a memorandum of understanding (MoU), the parties will work on a preliminary analysis for a 10 MW green hydrogen plant to be sited on Port of Tilbury land that formerly housed a coal-fired power station as well as a small-scale “proof of concept” demonstrator project. Over the next ten years, the companies will also look into ways to develop the project up to more than 100 MW. The hydrogen would supply nearby industry as well as be used for port operations and infrastructure.

In May 2023, RWE Renewables Europe & Australia won a competitive tender to build a 50 MW/400 MWh battery energy storage system in New South Wales, southeast Australia. The battery would be installed next to the 249 MW Limondale solar farm in Balranald, which is owned by RWE. Limondale has 770 hectares and has been in operation since 2021. RWE expects to announce the project’s final investment decision by May 2024. 

REGlobal’s Views: Ports can emerge as important energy hubs for not just domestic production and application of hydrogen but also exporting hydrogen to other large demand centers in Europe and across the globe. This current project at Port of Tilbury will not only help decarbonise port operations but also cater to domestic demand from nearby industries.