The Utah natural gas utility spinoff of Virginia-based Dominion Energy has initiated hydrogen blending in the city of Delta, Utah, as part of its efforts to explore the opportunities provided by this zero-carbon emissions fuel.
Hydrogen has the potential to be used for heating homes and buildings, powering manufacturing, and fueling transportation with few or no emissions. DEU says it is investing early in hydrogen to explore how it can help achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, while also decarbonizing other industries such as power generation, manufacturing and transportation.
The blending of hydrogen in Delta’s pipelines is the next phase of the ThermH2 project, which was piloted by DEU. The first phase of the project involved blending hydrogen in the utility’s Training Academy to confirm existing hydrogen research. During this phase, a five-percent hydrogen blend was tested for nearly a year and found to be safe and compatible with current residential appliances. The blend was also helpful in reducing emissions from appliances that use clean-burning natural gas.
To prepare its entire distribution system for hydrogen blending by 2030, DEU’s project will continue blending hydrogen in Delta’s pipelines over several years. An up-to five-percent blend of grey hydrogen will be introduced to the city and its surrounding towns of Deseret, Hinkley and Oasis, serving approximately 1800 customers. Throughout the project, the majority of hydrogen blended will be green hydrogen made from renewable energy.
This project is one of many ways that DEU, a subsidiary of Virginia-based utility Dominion Energy, is working towards achieving its sustainability goals and reducing emissions for the benefit of its customers, air quality and the environment. The company has already reduced methane emissions from its gas operations by 38 percent since 2010.
“The commencement of this project is very exciting for Dominion Energy Utah,” said Judd Cook, Vice President and General Manager of the Western Gas Distribution system at Dominion Energy. “We are always looking for ways to reduce emissions while still providing the reliable, affordable and safe service that our customers expect from us. This project provides an opportunity to do just that.”
Delta also will be the site of the Advanced Clean Energy Storage (ACES) joint venture between Mitsubishi Power and Magnum Development. Electrolyzers powered by renewable energy resources will produce hydrogen to be stored in massive salt caverns before the earth’s surface (see rendering above).
The hydrogen will eventually be transported for use in the energy mix. Intermountain Power Agency is going utilizing a mix of hydrogen with natural gas to fuel its combined cycle power plant and transmit electricity to markets in the western U.S.