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Fortescue green hydrogen project selected by US Department of Energy to develop Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub

14 October 2023

Fortescue has been selected to begin award negotiations as part of the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) development of the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub.

Fortescue a global leader in green energy, metals, and technology, has been selected to begin award negotiations as part of the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) development of the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub, which in total is estimated to receive up to $1 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding.

The selection also enables Fortescue to work in partnership to establish the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Hub, which includes Fortescue’s proposed green hydrogen production facility in Centralia, WA.

The OCED funding would support Fortescue’s participation in the Hydrogen Hub through the advancement of planning, detailed design, environmental permitting, and procurement of long-lead equipment.      

Fortescue Executive Chairman Dr Andrew Forrest, said, “There is no place better in the world to be investing in renewable and green energy projects right now than the United States.”

“Federal funding like this, alongside other incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act, go a long way to helping reduce risk and accelerate the wide-spread production of green hydrogen. In turn this will catalize substantial private sector investment, creating new good paying jobs and economic prosperity for Americans, particularly those in economically vulnerable communities in the Pacific Northwest.”

Fortescue North America CEO Andrew Vesey, said, “Today’s news that the region has been selected for award negotiations to develop an official federal Hydrogen Hub is a historic development for the Pacific Northwest and its ambitious decarbonization strategy.”

“We look forward to continuing our participation in the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Association as we work to accelerate the clean energy transition.”

Fortescue’s project in Centralia, WA is planned to be sited on a remediated coal mine adjacent to Washington’s last coal-fired power plant, scheduled to retire permanently in 2025. The proposed facility will produce green hydrogen at scale for use locally in the Pacific Northwest in heavy-duty transportation, grid reliability, maritime, industrial processes, and other hard-to-abate sectors.

In addition to the regional clean energy benefits, the proposed project, bolstered by today’s announcement, will create high-paying jobs for the local workforce and a new economic engine in Lewis County for the next generation and beyond.

The project is currently in the design stage, with full permitting to follow. Project construction is anticipated to start in 2026 and continue into 2028, subject to a Final Investment by the Fortescue board.