Production of green hydrogen and shared vehicles at ETCA
Driving on hydrogen is one way of reducing the environmental impact of mobility. Hydrogen also plays a major role in industry, for example as a chemical building block for manufacturing products, but also as an option for processes that require high temperatures. Making hydrogen production more sustainable, by capturing and storing CO2 ("blue hydrogen") or by producing hydrogen by electrolysis based on sustainable electricity ("green hydrogen"), will make a big difference to further limiting CO2 emissions.
Part of the produced hydrogen goes to the Gas-to-Liquids (GTL) test installation and a part to ETCA’s own hydrogen pump. GTL is a technology that uses natural gas instead of oil to make liquid products such as fuels for diesel engines and trucks. But it’s also used for raw materials for everyday products such as detergents, cosmetics and plastics. A second step towards sustainability is made when, instead of natural gas, green hydrogen is used as a feedstock for the pilot plant.
The hydrogen pump at the ETCA site was put into operation in 2019. This pump is the first in the Amsterdam region to illustrate the entire green hydrogen chain, from the energy generated by the sun to the emission of just water vapour from the car. ETCA employees can use two hydrogen pool cars for their business mileage.
How does driving on green hydrogen actually work? After the water has been split in an electrolyser into hydrogen and oxygen using electricity, the hydrogen liquefied under pressure gets put into the car. There it is converted into electricity in a so-called fuel cell by adding oxygen and the car then runs on it. It takes about five minutes to fill up with five kilograms of hydrogen, and the car can travel approximately 500 kilometres on that.
Shell is also contributing to an initial network of public hydrogen stations in the Netherlands. Shell's first public hydrogen filling point was opened in 2020 at Shell Den Ruygenhoek retail station along the A4 motorway near Hoofddorp. The ETCA hydrogen shared cars are used to test the filling process of other public hydrogen filling stations which are still under construction.
We are investing in renewable energy like solar, wind and advanced biofuels made from waste. We are also exploring new ways of storing renewable energy and developing digital products and services to help consumers and businesses use energy more efficiently. #MakeTheFuture showcases these on-going actions that Shell is taking to help create this more sustainable energy-rich, lower carbon future.
A new energy system is emerging. Interested in Shell initiatives in your neighborhood? Take a look at our examples in the Dutch energy transition (Dutch text only).
Energy is vital to our daily lives. Over the coming decades, more people will gain access to energy and enjoy higher standards of living. At the same time, climate change remains a serious concern. We use human ingenuity, innovation and technology to unlock more, cleaner energy for the years ahead.