Thai Oil invests in American green hydrogen startup

Thai and American companies are increasingly partnering on renewables. Thai Oil Plc., the Kingdom’s largest oil refining firm, has acquired a stake in Versogen, a U.S.-based startup specializing in the production of “green hydrogen,” a fuel made with minimal carbon emissions, as Thailand’s energy sector continues its green transition.

Green hydrogen is produced using renewable sources, such as wind and solar energy. Consequently, its manufacture produces much lower carbon emissions than traditional production of “gray” hydrogen. As with solar and wind energy, more widespread use is expected to lower its high cost of production over time.

Delaware-based Versogen says that it “produces green hydrogen at scale – reliably and affordably.” It claims to use a breakthrough electrolyzer technology to accomplish that. “Our versatile hydrogen-generating solutions will substantially reduce industrial carbon emissions and lay the foundation for a sustainable energy future,” the company states on its website.

Green hydrogen can be used by manufacturers of cement, steel and other important materials whose production can be difficult to decarbonize, lowering their total emissions. It can also be used in hydrogen fuel cells.

Thai  Oil, owned by Thai energy conglomerate PTT, has set a target of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050. That would be in line with Thailand’s national commitments for carbon neutrality and lowering greenhouse gas emissions to meet the goals of the Paris Climate Accords and COP 26.

While oil refining and petrochemicals account for 80 percent of Thai Oil’s revenues, the company has said that it is striving to diversify and increase its share of earnings from renewables and non-oil businesses.

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