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UAE to develop hydrogen, CCUS projects to help combat climate change: minister

The UAE, OPEC’s third largest oil producer, plans to develop hydrogen and carbon, capture, utilization and storage projects to help combat climate change, while at the same time focusing on low-cost and low-carbon oil and gas production, industry and advanced technology minister said Jan. 19.

Source: S&P Global Platts, by Dania Saadi

“With our existing infrastructure and large CCUS capabilities, we believe we can be one of the lowest cost and largest producers of blue hydrogen in the world,” Sultan al-Jaber, who is the UAE’s special envoy for climate change and CEO of Abu Dhabi National Oil Co., told the Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week summit.

“There is no credible way of reaching global climate goals without the widespread adoption of CCUS.”

ADNOC, the UAE’s biggest energy producer, plans to boost its capacity to capture 5 million tons/year of CO2 by 2030, from 800,000 tons/year now. ADNOC, sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Co., and investor ADQ have formed an alliance to make oil-rich Abu Dhabi a leader in producing low-carbon green and blue hydrogen, the companies said Jan. 17.

The three companies will create a roadmap for adoption of hydrogen in the country’s utilities, mobility and industry with international partners.

Low-carbon oil

Mubadala and Siemens Energy also said Jan. 17 they have signed a memorandum of understanding to create a partnership to drive investment and development of projects to produce green hydrogen and synthetic fuel.

ADNOC currently produces around 300,000 mt/year of hydrogen for its downstream operations, and plans to expand it to more than 500,000 mt.

However, the UAE still plans to tap its oil and gas reserves due to expected demand for its low-cost, low-carbon hydrocarbons, Jaber said. ADNOC plans to ramp up its production capacity to 5 million b/d by 2030 from over 4 million b/d currently.

“Oil and gas will need to remain part of this [diverse] energy mix for many years to come,” said Jaber. “That’s why we must make oil and gas as low carbon as possible.”

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