Veolia and Towngas join hands to launch Hong Kong’s first green hydrogen production project

Veolia and Towngas join hands to launch
Hong Kong’s first green hydrogen production project

(18 June 2024) Veolia and The Hong Kong and China Gas Company Limited (Towngas) are taking the lead in responding to the HKSAR Government’s Strategy of Hydrogen Development in Hong Kong. The two companies have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to jointly develop Hong Kong’s first green hydrogen project at the South East New Territories Landfill Extension (SENTX) in Tseung Kwan O. By utilising biogas to produce green hydrogen and promoting various hydrogen energy applications, the project aims to convert waste into energy. The first batch of locally produced green hydrogen is expected to be available next year. 

Following the recent release of the Strategy of Hydrogen Development in Hong Kong by the HKSAR Government, Towngas and Green Valley Landfill, Limited, a joint venture company of Veolia, signed the MoU to align with Hong Kong’s hydrogen energy development direction. The project was approved by the Inter-departmental Working Group on Using Hydrogen as Fuel led by the Environment and Ecology Bureau in March this year, with production expected to commence in 2025.

Located at the SENTX Landfill, the green hydrogen project includes a new hydrogen production unit, hydrogen transmission facilities, and a hydrogen refuelling station. Veolia and Towngas will collect biogas from the landfill and convert it into green hydrogen with steam methane reforming technology through these facilities. As biogas is generated from the decomposition of organic matter in the landfill, the resulting hydrogen is considered green. This project marks the first application of this technology in Hong Kong, with an expected daily production capacity of around 330 kg of hydrogen, sufficient to power seven to eight hydrogen buses for a full day.

Mr Tse Chin-wan, Secretary for Environment and Ecology, was present at the MOU signing ceremony for Hong Kong’s first green hydrogen project. He pointed out, “To achieve the goals set by the HKSAR Government in 2021 - to strive to reduce Hong Kong’s carbon emissions by half from 2005 levels by 2035 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 - a low-carbon energy transformation is crucial. The pilot cooperation between Veolia Hong Kong and Towngas is the first local green hydrogen production demonstration project, playing a pioneering role in advancing Hong Kong’s low-carbon hydrogen energy development. Looking ahead, the Government will continue to support and encourage the industry to explore more diverse hydrogen energy trials and collaborative projects, jointly supporting the promotion of hydrogen energy applications and industrial development, with the aim of accelerating Hong Kong’s low-carbon transformation and the development of new quality productive forces.”

Mr Laurent Pelletier, Chief Executive Officer of Veolia Hong Kong and Macau, said that this collaboration with Towngas to develop Hong Kong’s first green hydrogen project demonstrates the importance of partnerships to accelerate the decarbonisation of Hong Kong. “The Veolia Group has 170 years of experience dedicated to protecting the environment, tackling climate change and regenerating resources. Rooted in Hong Kong for over 30 years, Veolia has been implementing different solutions to develop cleaner energy. This green hydrogen project is an example of replicating Veolia’s experience abroad to promote more waste-to-energy projects in Hong Kong and participate in the carbon neutrality objectives set by the Government.”

This pioneering green hydrogen project signifies an important milestone in Hong Kong’s green hydrogen energy development. Mr Peter Wong Wai-yee, Managing Director of Towngas, hopes the project can serve as a pilot demonstration. Once successfully implemented, the relevant experience and technology can be replicated in other landfills and application scenarios, making good use of biogas to produce green hydrogen as a sustainable fuel. Mr Wong noted, “Half of the gas produced by Towngas is composed of hydrogen. With over 160 years of experience and a 3,700-kilometre pipeline network, Towngas has the infrastructure advantage for hydrogen transmission and supply, and therefore can provide green hydrogen to millions of households in Hong Kong. This project is about taking the lead, starting small but moving quickly to promote the future development of the hydrogen energy industry, bringing harmony and prosperity to every home.”