Upcoming webinar to shed light on regional hydrogen economy

· The Pulse
By Nathan Fung
in the Regional Roundup
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Regional economic development agency Edmonton Global is holding a webinar this week to help demystify the region's transition towards hydrogen energy.

The Oct. 28 webinar, aimed at those in Edmonton's business community, is meant to boost understanding of the opportunities associated with developing the hydrogen economy. Webinar topics will include the Edmonton Region Hydrogen Hub's "base case" for future hydrogen demand, how regional partners are targeting investment opportunities, and how companies are already responding to the transition.

"I think people have heard about hydrogen over the years. They may have developed a certain impression, 'Oh this is something that's down the road, they keep talking about this, but it's not all that real,'" Brent Lakeman, Edmonton Global's hydrogen initiative director, told Taproot.

"But we've got companies presenting [at the webinar] like Mitsui out of Tokyo … and they'll be talking about how they see the hydrogen economy unfolding," he said. "So things are happening."

Panelists will include leaders from Edmonton-area economic development agencies, including:

Presenters from industry will talk about their interests in Edmonton and hydrogen energy. These include:

  • Kaoru Sakaguchi, general manager of mobility business with Mitsui
  • Ian Paine, a Western Canada performance director with Lafarge
Brent Lakeman, Edmonton Global

Brent Lakeman, Edmonton Global's hydrogen initiative director, hopes the webinar will help some better understand the regional hydrogen economy. (Supplied)

The Edmonton Region Hydrogen Hub was launched in April, with intentions of accelerating a regional hydrogen economy through low-cost, low-carbon hydrogen fuel.

Lakeman said there has been a lot of hydrogen-related investment in the region in the last six months, which he estimates could be valued at over $30 billion over the next 10 years.

One of Edmonton's strengths as a producer of hydrogen is its natural gas resources, as well as how the infrastructure for carbon capture and storage is already in place, he said. These factors give Edmonton an advantage over other jurisdictions that are just starting to look at hydrogen, he added.

"We can begin to move ahead really quickly because we know the world is moving to net-zero commitments," he said. "We don't really have time to wait for another generation of technology to emerge, we got to get moving right now and we can do that in the Edmonton area."