ValueTheMarkets.com News Commentary: The US Department of Energy's massive Hydrogen Hubs program is likely to provide as much as $1.25bn in funding to the HALO Project, according to Rystad Energy. But which energy innovators are poised to benefit from this reported outcome? This article discusses the issue with reference to HALO Project participants Baker Hughes (NYSE: BKR), Air Products and Chemicals (NYSE: APD), CF Industries Holdings (NYSE: CF) and Jericho Energy Ventures (TSX.V: JEV) (OTC: JROOF).
The HALO project, which is a collaboration between Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas, includes some heavy hitters among its stakeholders. Oilfield services giant Baker Hughes has been leaning further and further into the hydrogen space with a raft of new technology testing and investment. Air Products and Chemicals could use the project to further expand its already extensive transportation operations. Meanwhile, CF Industries looks set to have a major impact on the US agricultural sector's emissions with its groundbreaking plans for a major electrolysis plant.
Jericho Energy Ventures (TSX.V: JEV) (OTC: JROOF) has various joint-venture hydrocarbon properties generating cashflow which it reinvests in the richly valued hydrogen industry. This extensive reinvestment in the hydrogen industry is what has resulted in the company backing the HALO project. Its main focus is its zero-emission boiler technology developed by its subsidiary Hydrogen Technologies, which serves the industrial heat and steam industry. As industrial and hard-to-abate businesses seek ways to cut emissions, this innovative DCC™ hydrogen-fueled steam boiler offers a compelling option. It's this boiler technology which Jericho is hoping can play a major part in turning the tri-state area into a hydrogen powerhouse through the HALO Hydrogen Hub project. This exciting small-cap's strong run of positive news, which includes new customer wins and partnerships, has led analysts to rank the stock a BUY and up its target price to CAD$0.50. This is a return to target of 92%!
Renowned oilfield services provider Baker Hughes (NYSE: BKR) is another of the parties behind the HALO Project. This mega-cap is one of the key partners and will contribute at least $100,000 to the initial development effort. Its emerging interest in the hydrogen space is a major vote of confidence for the energy source. The last year has seen the company make several hydrogen moves, including successful tests on the use of hydrogen as a fuel to power gas turbines. The business also purchased a minority stake in hydrogen and ammonia developer ATOME in May, amounting to more than 6.5% of the firm's share capital. ATOME is using the funds to expand its flagship operations in Paraguay, while it is in discussions concerning further projects in Costa Rica and Iceland.
In industrial chemicals experts Air Products and Chemicals (NYSE: APD), the HALO hydrogen hub project has a stakeholder with major experience in hydrogen technology leadership. The business deployed its first hydrogen fueling station way back in 1993 and continues to make advances in using the gas as a transportation fuel and source of power generation. As such, we don't have to harken back to the 1990s for the company's latest hydrogen progress. Last year the company announced its intention to work on construction of the UK's first-ever large-scale green hydrogen production facility. It has also taken particular leadership in providing green hydrogen to fuel vehicles, opening Europe's first large-scale public truck refueling station to utilize liquid hydrogen. With over 250 hydrogen fueling station projects in 20 countries, the company looks well-placed to play a major role in the success of the HALO project.
CF Industries Holdings (NYSE: CF), which is the world's largest producer of ammonia, is one of the companies most heavily involved with the HALO project. As part of the overall HALO funding application, the business proposed the development of a zero-carbon-intensity hydrogen project at its Verdigris Complex in Oklahoma. The proposed project would see the construction of a 100-megawatt (MW) electrolysis plant that would be powered by a dedicated 450-MW renewable energy facility developed by NextEra Energy. The green hydrogen produced by the project would be used to produce up to 100,000 tons per year of zero-carbon green ammonia, which the company said would support the transition of American agriculture to low- and zero-carbon fertilizers. It claimed that this could result in the removal of as much as 130,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions from the agriculture supply chain each year.
Many industry players look poised to benefit from, and contribute to, the HALO hydrogen hub if the project wins its funding. CF Industries' plans would see the project impacting agriculture, while Air Products is well-placed to implement innovative methods of hydrogen deployment as transport fuel. In Baker Hughes, a major player is throwing its weight behind the project, and increasing hydrogen availability in the region could see demand for Jericho's innovative industrial heating solutions soar.
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