MEDICINE HAT, ALTA. – An independent working group to establish a framework to implement a hydrogen economy in southeast Alberta has officially launched.
The Southeast Alberta Hydrogen Task Force will be led by Invest Medicine Hat. It includes representatives from Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan), the City of Medicine Hat, City of Brooks, Palliser Economic Partnership, CF Industries, Methanex Corporation, APEX Regional Innovation Network, RockPoint Gas Storage, Campus Energy, Envoy Energy and The Transition Accelerator. The task force intends to produce foundational tools that detail the opportunities available to advance a zero-emission fuel economy in the region.
The Southeast Alberta Task Force was modelled after Alberta’s Industrial Heartland Hydrogen Task Force, whose research paved the way for the Edmonton Region Hydrogen HUB to be established.
“The City of Medicine Hat is proud to play a leadership role in establishing Canada’s second industrial hydrogen hub,” said Medicine Hat Mayor Ted Clugston in a statement. “This foundational work will form the basis of a long-term, regional economic development strategy, with the goal of creating thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars of investment in the local economy.”
The task force explained global hydrogen demand is forecast to grow exponentially in the coming decades as countries around the world drive to net zero and they believe the region could be positioned to be one of world’s lowest cost producers of low-carbon hydrogen.
The task force’s foundational study is the first step toward identifying broader economic opportunities associated with growing large-scale clean hydrogen production and use.
“The Southeast Alberta Task Force is the result of government and industry coming together to champion real change so Alberta can win economically and environmentally in a changing world,” said Dan Wicklum, CEO of The Transition Accelerator. “Picture Alberta using and supplying the world with zero-emission fuel made by upgrading natural gas or renewable energy. This could be a part of a very strong future for Alberta and Canada.”
The foundational work is scheduled to be completed in early 2022. A summarizing report is expected to follow.