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‘This is a big deal.’ Pacific NW wins hydrogen hub funding

Federal clean energy project will create thousands of quality jobs in the region


OLYMPIA (Oct. 13, 2023) — The Biden administration announced today that the U.S. Department of Energy has chosen the Pacific Northwest as one of the Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The decision means up to $1 billion in federal funding for clean hydrogen power solutions for the region, with the potential to create tens of thousands of quality jobs here. President of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO April Sims was part of the small team working to secure this funding for Washington State and in August traveled to Washington, D.C. to participate in the U.S. Department of Energy interview process, helping to win the award.

“This is a big deal for workers, families, and communities in our state and for the Pacific Northwest,” said Sims, who serves on the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Association (PNWH2) Board that submitted the region’s hydrogen hub proposal. “Washington’s union movement is focused not only on promoting clean energy development, but also on ensuring that the jobs it creates pay livable wages. Making the Pacific Northwest a clean, low-carbon hydrogen production and distribution hub is an investment in creating and sustaining good jobs, and strengthening our communities.”

The hubs are networks of hydrogen producers and consumers that will use local infrastructure to accelerate the deployment of clean hydrogen.

The PNWH2, a multistate coalition that includes Washington, Oregon and Montana, submitted the region’s application in April. Its concept envisions creating a dynamic Pacific Northwest network of clean, renewable hydrogen suppliers and end-users to decarbonize some of the hardest-to-abate sectors, such as heavy-duty transportation, aviation, maritime, agriculture, and industrial operations.

The PNWH2 vows that Pacific Northwest hydrogen hub will benefit communities throughout the region by focusing on creating economic opportunity across all demographics, resulting in tens of thousands of jobs, improved energy resiliency, and decreased environmental burdens in disadvantaged communities.

In addition to the Pacific Northwest, the DOE also announced hydrogen hub investments for several other U.S. regions. These winning proposals will each receive part of $7 billion in federal grants, with a potential investment of up to $1 billion per hub. Additional vetting and negotiations will determine final funding decisions, which will be announced in 2024.

For more information and updates, visit the PNWH2 website.

Governor Jay Inslee is hosting a press conference at 2 p.m. Pacific time today about the hydrogen hub. This report will be updated.

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