Governor Eric J. Holcomb today applauded the U.S. Department of Energy for awarding up to $1 billion in grant funding to the Midwest Alliance for Clean Hydrogen (MachH2), which aims to develop a regional clean hydrogen hub that would include projects in Indiana.
MachH2, which consists of more than 70 Midwest public and private organizations that support the energy transition, has proposed a regional hydrogen hub that would include blue-hydrogen production at or near bp’s Whiting, Indiana refinery. Its plan also supports development of a hydrogen mobility corridor in Indiana and across neighboring states.
Blue hydrogen is a low carbon fuel that can be used to reduce carbon emissions from many difficult-to-decarbonize sectors of the economy, including steelmaking, power generation, agriculture, cement, aviation, and long-haul transportation. It is made by converting natural gas into carbon dioxide and hydrogen, capturing the carbon dioxide, then safely and permanently storing it deep underground.
“We are ecstatic that Indiana is a beneficiary of this monumental investment,” Gov. Holcomb said. “This funding has the potential to support the unprecedented economic investment proposed by BP that will cement Indiana’s pole position in the new energy economy. This grant could propel forward this project as a critical piece of this new hydrogen ecosystem.
“We are thrilled that the US Department of Energy awarded this grant to the MachH2 coalition,” said Tomeka McLeod, bp vice president – US Hydrogen and CCS. “Our proposed Midwest hydrogen hub can help decarbonize America’s industrial heartland while enhancing Indiana’s economy, creating jobs and attracting new businesses and investments to the state. Governor Holcomb and the Indiana state legislature thankfully had the foresight last year to create a policy framework that allows us to seize this historic opportunity, and we are excited to do our part in making the Midwest hydrogen hub a reality.”
On March 18, 2022, Governor Holcomb signed into law HB 1209, which established a regulatory framework for Indiana carbon-storage projects that would support clean-hydrogen production in the state.
Governor Holcomb has recognized the need for Midwest collaboration to obtain federal funds directed at creating hydrogen ecosystems throughout the United States. This is why in September 2022 he signed a partnership with 7 other Midwest governors to establish a regional hydrogen coalition to encourage collaborative efforts to expand this economic opportunity.
And on September 27, 2022, alongside key state and federal lawmakers, Governor Holcomb ceremonially signed HB 1209 in Whiting, Indiana joined by leadership from BP, the Indiana Farm Bureau, Purdue University, Indiana Manufacturers Association, the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, NW Indiana Forum and others.
Gov. Holcomb has shared far and wide how Indiana is a leader in the energy transition. He was the first Indiana governor to participate in a UN COP event when he delivered two keynote addresses at COP27 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt in November of 2022. On the global stage he shared Indiana’s collaborative strategies for being a leader in the energy transition through an all-of-the-above approach which continues to attract investments that have contributed to Indiana’s ranking as No. 4 in the U.S. for new clean energy projects.
This most recent announcement by the U.S. DOE to award the MachH2 coalition is an acknowledgement that the Midwest possesses all the components critical for a successful hydrogen economy, including new opportunities to incorporate hydrogen into existing and new manufacturing processes. The award promotes opportunities to support Indiana’s manufacturing sector, especially in the northwest Indiana region, to remain globally competitive and support thousands of Hoosier jobs in these critical sectors.
Indiana has been home to bp’s Whiting refinery for more than 130 years and continues to be a strong supporter of responsible investments by the company, which also has a vast network of fuel-and-convenience locations, three wind farms and a renewable natural gas plant in the state.