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OMV to build Austria’s largest electrolysis plant

OMV, the integrated, international oil, gas and chemicals company headquartered in Vienna together with Kommunalkredit Austria have announced a joint investment in the construction of Austria’s largest electrolysis plant in the OMV Schwechat Refinery.

The total investment will be around 25 million euros, with OMV and Kommunalkredit each bearing half the cost. The plant is expected to go live in the second half of 2023. From this point, the 10 megawatts (MW) polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) electrolysis will produce up to 1,500 metric tons of green hydrogen a year. The green hydrogen will be used to hydrogenate bio-based and fossil fuels, substituting grey hydrogen in the refinery.

This would reduce OMV’s carbon footprint by up to 15,000 metric tons of fossil CO2 annually and enables by using green hydrogen more than 17 million CO2 emission-free bus or truck kilometres each year.

“By building Austria’s largest electrolysis plant in the OMV Schwechat Refinery, we are making another contribution to reducing CO2 and to meeting climate targets, whereby hydrogen is a key technology,” said Thomas Gangl, OMV Chief Downstream Operations Officer. “We deliberately opted for green hydrogen production on an industrial scale as we see the potential it holds – for lower-carbon road use as well as for reducing CO2 emissions in industrial operations.”

“This project is a milestone in Austria’s industrial policy under the EU Green Deal,” commented Bernd Fislage, CEO of Kommunalkredit Austria. “We take our responsibility towards society seriously, to contribute to measures that help to prevent climate change. As a member of the European Clean Hydrogen Alliance, we are backing our words with actions, supporting the construction of the electrolysis plant with green financing and thereby making an important contribution, together with OMV, to the United Nations’ SDGs.”

OMV laid out its ambitious climate targets back in July 2020. These include reaching net-zero emissions in operations through energy-efficiency measures, new technologies such as carbon capture and storage or carbon capture and utilisation, hydrogen, renewables and measures to optimise the portfolio.

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