The Western Cape has been on a mission to create a power grid that’s completely reliant on renewable energy. The seaside paradise of Saldanha on the West Coast has been pinpointed as more than just a holidaymaker’s go-to spot for rest and relaxation but home to an abundance of solar and wind resources.
Experts are now bringing attention to the fact that this bustling seaside town has the potential to be a hydrogen fuel export hub – the perfect area for the development of a green hydrogen economy, as per IOL.
What is green hydrogen?
Green hydrogen is fast becoming the leading alternative to icky fossil fuels and can help the world reach its race to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Basically, green hydrogen is defined as hydrogen produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen through the use of renewable energy.
It offers a long-term solution as countries look to cleaner energy solutions as there is an abundance of renewable resources such as wind, solar and hydro, as per We Forum.
What Saldanha has to offer
During a recent webinar, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) senior research engineer Thomas Roos noted that the Saldanha Bay area was the ideal location for a green hydrogen economy as it offers solar and wind resources that have massive potential for large renewable energy electricity at competitive costs.
While transitioning to renewable energy has plenty of benefits, developing a hydrogen export hub would undoubtedly benefit the community of Saldanha through job creation.
Saldanha Bay Industrial Development Zone (SBIDZ) CEO, Kaashifah Beukes reiterated the benefits of having South Africa switch to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly fuel source. Improved air quality, a happier environment, and less reliance on a failing national grid could ease South Africa’s energy burden.
“Recent reports showed that South Africa could generate power fuels based on renewable hydrogen.
“It concluded that Saldanha Bay was well placed for the export of power fuels to Northwest Europe and the Far East, at costs competitive with other renewable-rich countries,” indicated SBIDZ executive Adinda Preller.
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Picture: Saldanha Bay Municipality