UK supermajor BP is looking at producing green hydrogen at the site of a recently closed oil refinery in Western Australia.
The company revealed Tuesday it is carrying out a feasibility study into the production of green hydrogen at the Kwinana site, south of Perth, which ceased operations as an oil refinery in March this year.
The study forms part of BP's plans to repurpose the former refinery site as an integrated energy hub, with the company looking to develop a renewable fuels plant at the site, also producing sustainable aviation fuel and renewable diesel.
The Kwinana Industrial Area is the largest industrial cluster in Western Australia, with BP claiming the green hydrogen feasibility study will help progress the decarbonisation of industrial processes in the area by integrating green energy alternatives for existing industrial uses.
“For more than 65 years, BP’s Kwinana site has played an integral role in the Kwinana Industrial Area, which is comprised of a diverse range of high emission producing industries, including mineral refineries, power stations, chemical plants and cement works,” BP Australia president Frederic Baudry said.
“We are excited by the role BP’s Kwinana energy hub will play in close collaboration with our partners. BP has a strong track record as an energy provider to the industrial area and has readily accessible land, existing infrastructure including storage and distribution facilities, and a team with extensive operational capabilities and experience.”
The feasibility study is being carried out in partnership with Macquarie Capital, with the company’s co-head for Australia and New Zealand, John Pickhaver, adding: “We are delighted to be partnering with BP in this project as part of our greater commitment to supporting the transition to a low-carbon economy.
“We believe Australia — and Kwinana in particular — has a number of use cases that support a meaningful green hydrogen industry.”
The Western Australian government is also backing the feasibility study with a A$300,000 (US$223,498) contribution.
“BP's proposal to convert the old Kwinana oil refinery into a green hydrogen hub will help to revitalise Kwinana and bring this facility into a low-emissions future,” Western Australia’s Hydrogen Industry Minister Alannah MacTiernan said.
"We've seen real success off the back of previously funded studies, including our A$375,000 investment into feasibility of ATCO's Clean Energy Innovation Park in early 2020, which went on to secure a A$28.7 million Australian Renewable Energy Agency grant."
The feasibility study at the Kwinana site follows hot on the heels of the findings of a study completed by BP earlier this year which found the production of green hydrogen and green ammonia using renewable energy was technically feasible at scale in Western Australia.