Anglo-Dutch supermajor Shell is teaming up with Norwegian companies Aker Clean Hydrogen and CapeOmega to explore producing blue hydrogen using natural gas at the proposed Aukra Hydrogen Hub in Norway.

The trio signed a memorandum of understanding this week to explore developing the Aukra Hydrogen Hub into a large-scale facility, utilising gas from the nearby gas processing plant at Nyhamna.

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Shell operates the Ormen Lange gas field in the Norwegian Sea, where gas is transported via pipeline to the processing plant at Nyhamna.

The supermajor also holds a stake in the Equinor-led Northern Lights project, which aims to store 1.5 million tpa of carbon dioxide beneath the North Sea, while a potential second phase development could boost the capacity to 3.5 million tpa.

“Shell’s target is to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050. Joining forces with Aker Clean Hydrogen and CapeOmega to work on the exciting opportunities within the Aukra Hydrogen hub is a natural step on our path towards reaching our target,” managing director of Norske Shell, Marianne J Olsnes, said.

Aker Clean Hydrogen and CapeOmega entered into a cooperation agreement earlier this year to explore developing a project to produce hydrogen, ammonia, and related products in Aukra. This was followed up with a MoU last month to explore the opportunity to develop the Aukra Hydrogen Hub.

“This is an important milestone for us," Aker Clean Hydrogen chief executive Knut Nyborg said following the signing of the MoU with Shell.

"I’m very happy to have Shell onboard as a partner together with CapeOmega on this project, as all three partners have a strong connection to the Nyhamna terminal, and together we have got what it takes to develop, build and operate the Aukra Hydrogen Hub safely and cost-efficiently."

The proposed hydrogen hub will use steam methane reforming to split natural gas from the Nyhamna plant into hydrogen and CO2, with the CO2 to be captured and stored.

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