California Awarded Up to $1.2 Billion to Advance Hydrogen Roadmap and Meet Climate and Clean Energy Goals

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For Immediate Release
Contact: Molly Weedn
media@arches2.org

October 13, 2023                                                                                                                                             

Statewide clean hydrogen hub expected to generate nearly $3 billion per year in health care cost savings and create over 220,000 new green jobs

California – Today, in a historic announcement, California has been awarded up to $1.2 billion from the United States Department of Energy (DOE) to build and expand projects focused on clean energy and creating green jobs with the ultimate goal of achieving a net-zero carbon economy by 2045.

California is one of seven awardees of the DOE’s Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs (H2Hubs), which will kickstart a national network of clean hydrogen producers, consumers, and connective infrastructure while supporting the production, storage, delivery, and end-use of clean hydrogen. The H2Hubs are expected to collectively produce three million metric tons of hydrogen annually, reaching nearly a third of the 2030 U.S. production target and lowering emissions from hard-to-decarbonize industrial sectors that represent 30 percent of total U.S. carbon emissions. Together, they will also reduce 25 million metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from end-uses each year—an amount roughly equivalent to combined annual emissions of 5.5 million gasoline-powered cars—and create and retain tens of thousands of good-paying jobs across the country while supporting healthier communities.

California submitted an application in April through the Alliance for Renewable Clean Hydrogen Energy Systems (ARCHES), a statewide public-private partnership designed to accelerate renewable hydrogen’s (H2) contribution to decarbonizing the state’s economy and build on California’s long-standing H2 and renewable energy leadership. The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) has joined with the University of California, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, state agencies, elected leaders, organized labor, and non-profit organizations to build the framework for California’s renewable, clean hydrogen hub.

“Unlocking the full potential of hydrogen—a versatile fuel that can be made from almost any energy resource in virtually every part of the country—is crucial to achieving President Biden’s goal of American industry powered by American clean energy, ensuring less volatility and more affordable clean energy options for American families and businesses,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “With this historic investment, the Biden-Harris Administration is laying the foundation for a new, American-led industry that will propel the global clean energy transition while creating high quality jobs and delivering healthier communities in every pocket of the nation.” 

“Today’s announcement is an extraordinary investment not just in California’s future, but for the entire country,” said Angelina Galiteva, CEO, ARCHES. “ARCHES is honored to have been chosen for such substantial funding, and we are eager to get to work to bring cutting edge projects to life up and down the state. We are grateful to President Biden and to Secretary Granholm for their dedication to a clean hydrogen future, and we look forward to rolling up our sleeves and working with our partners to advance a zero-carbon economy in a just and equitable manner that will improve the quality of life for millions of Californians.”

“This award is a testament to California’s unrivaled commitment to a carbon-neutral future,” said Dee Dee Myers, Senior Advisor to the Governor, Director of GO-Biz and founding ARCHES Board Member. “There is no better place to showcase the benefits of clean, renewable hydrogen – and the role it can play in decarbonizing our economy while creating green jobs and sustainable business at scale. This critical funding will help California build a system of hydrogen projects to integrate renewable energy into our economy, resulting in cleaner air and family supporting jobs for communities across the state.”

The H2Hubs are one of the most significant investments in the United States Department of Energy’s history and is funded by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

“When evaluating our process and application to the Department of Energy, we wanted to ensure that meeting the needs of California’s most disadvantaged communities and creating green jobs were priorities,” added Galiteva. “We are proud to have an engaged community process and the support of organized labor as we move forward with many of the projects outlined in our application.”

“Research and innovation emerging from the University of California is a key part of our collective effort to build a clean, renewable energy future for all,” said Dr. Michael V. Drake, President of the University of California. “We are proud to help lead ARCHES and to collaborate with partners across sectors, including the state of California, to address the climate crisis.”

“Today’s announcement will bring more than 220,000 well-paying jobs to California, centered along the state’s major transportation corridors,” said Chris Hannan, President of the State Building & Construction Trades Council of California. “This means reliable, clean energy careers for workers in a real and meaningful way, helping not only to provide employment, but also to build the economy across California.”

Last year, Governor Newsom signed into law an ambitious package of climate legislation that included a mandate to achieve carbon neutrality no later than 2045 and deliver 90% clean electricity by 2035. Governor Newsom’s Executive Order on Zero-Emission VehiclesCalifornia’s Scoping Plan and directive to create an all-of-government Hydrogen Market Development Strategy have sent strong market signals about the critical role hydrogen will play in decarbonizing our hard to abate sectors. To hit these ambitious goals, California must dramatically reduce its reliance on carbon-based fuels, which ARCHES and its projects will help accomplish.

In coming weeks, ARCHES will be working with the DOE to develop a detailed implementation plan to realize the projects proposed in the application and finalize a realistic project schedule that gets California on track to get shovels in the ground and infrastructure built in the most expedited fashion possible.

ARCHES is committed to ensuring an equitable transition to renewable hydrogen and all projects must advance diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility. Projects will be focused in communities with the largest pollution burden and at least 40% of the benefits from ARCHES’ projects will flow to California’s disadvantaged communities. Along with the creation of over 220,000 new green jobs, it is also estimated that ARCHES’ projects will ultimately result in $2.95 billion per year (starting in 2030) in economic value including increased health and health-care cost savings due to reductions in pollutant emissions.

As project buildout details crystalize, ARCHES will be collaborating closely with local communities and key stakeholders to further educate and engage all parties involved about California’s ongoing commitment to decarbonizing the state through historic, clean energy investments.

To stay connected to ARCHES and the latest developments, please visit the ARCHES website and follow their social media channels:

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