Chinese oil and petrochemicals supplier Sinopec is making significant progress in its mission to establish a complete hydrogen value chain, according to its latest sustainability report.
The company is accelerating the development of hydrogen energy as a core business of its new energy portfolio, with an initial focus on supplying the refining and transportation sectors.
Sinopec aims to become a global leader in the domestic hydrogen energy industry and has set an interim target to install 1,000 hydrogen refueling stations by 2025, supplied with 120,000 tonnes a year of low-carbon hydrogen. The company has allocated 30 billion yuan ($4.6 billion) to the project.
By the end of 2022, Sinopec had already built 98 hydrogen refueling stations, providing high-purity hydrogen for fuel cells, with a total delivery capacity of 16,500 tonnes per year. The company, which is already China’s largest producer of grey hydrogen, manufacturing 3.5 million tonnes in 2021, aims to increase its production of low-carbon green and blue hydrogen.
In addition to hydrogen production, Sinopec is actively developing hydrogen purification technologies for fuel cells and conducting research on high-strength, high-pressure hydrogen storage materials and equipment. The company is also investing in hydrogen transmission infrastructure, including a 100,000 tonne-per-year hydrogen pipeline stretching 400 kilometers.
Furthermore, Sinopec is making significant strides in carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS). It captured 1.53 million tonnes of CO2 in 2022, primarily from its ammonia production processes. The company plans to store 300,000 tonnes of CO2 by 2023 and has already begun operating the Qilu-Shengli Oilfield CCUS project, capable of capturing one million tonnes of CO2 annually.
Sinopec’s focus on hydrogen and CCUS technologies positions it as a technology company with a complete carbon-related industrial chain. The company aims to combine its expertise in CCUS and hydrogen to create a blue hydrogen value chain across China. It is actively involved in research and development partnerships, including a joint study with Shell plc, BASF, and Baowu, to develop a CCUS-as-a-service model for emissions transportation.
With its ambitious goals, Sinopec is committed to reaching an emissions peak by 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.