United Arab Emirates-based energy giants Taqa and Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) are teaming up pursue renewable energy and green hydrogen opportunities.

The companies unveiled the new venture last week, which will is aimed at creating a "clean energy powerhouse" with at least 30 gigawatts of renewable energy generating capacity by 2030.

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The pair said they would look to leverage Adnoc’s energy and hydrogen capabilities — including its ongoing efforts to create domestic and international hydrogen value chains — along with Taqa’s “renewables expertise” — particularly in low-cost solar power.

The newly formed partnership will focus on renewable energy and waste-to-energy projects, both in the UAE and internationally, as well as the production, processing and storage of green hydrogen.

Bold new clean energy initiative

Adnoc chief executive Sultan Ahmed Al Jaber claimed the new venture would help future proof his company’s business model by creating "compelling business and commercial opportunities” as part of the global energy transition.

“This innovative and collaborative venture is a bold new initiative, as it combines both companies’ respective areas of expertise and paves the way for our viable entry into the clean energy space,” he added.

“This platform will enable Adnoc to capitalise on the many renewable energy and hydrogen opportunities, both locally and globally. Building on Adnoc’s highly successful partnership and growth model, we invite other partners to join this promising new venture on its exciting journey.”

Taqa chairman Mohamed Hassan Alsuwaidi added: “This partnership between Taqa and Adnoc will be a powerful catalyst to unlock significant potential for accelerating the green hydrogen market and rapidly expanding renewable energy.

“Taqa is supporting Abu Dhabi’s aim to be a green hydrogen hub using our expertise in low-cost solar PV and desalinated water: two critical elements for green hydrogen.”

Taqa has set a target for more than 20% of its power generation capacity to be derived from solar power by 2030, and more than 50% of its water desalination capacities to be produced through reverse osmosis technology.

Adnoc targets becoming major hydrogen player

The partnership comes as Adnoc targets utilising its abundant gas supplies to become a “major player in the emerging blue hydrogen market”, while also exploring the potential of green hydrogen.

The company already produces about 300,000 tonnes per annum of hydrogen for its downstream operations and has previously stated it intends to expand it to more than 500,000 tpa, however, how much blue and green hydrogen production will make up that figure is not clear.

Green vs Blue

Blue hydrogen is produced from natural gas feedstocks, with the carbon dioxide by-product from hydrogen production captured and stored. However, the process is not emissions free.

Green hydrogen is made using electrolysis powered by renewable energy to split water molecules into oxygen and hydrogen, creating an emissions-free fuel.

Last month, Adnoc launched a new clean energy partnership with compatriot Emirates Water and Electricity Company (EWEC), which could see up to 100% of the Adoc’s grid power supplied by EWEC’s nuclear and solar clean energy sources.

It followed the announcement by the UAE that it was targeting net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, despite also pushing ahead with plans for higher oil and gas production capacity.

The UAE plans to increase oil output capacity to 5 million barrels per day by end of this decade, up from 4 million bpd currently.