IBEW 1245 is excited and proud to stand as a partner with the Northern California Power Agency (NCPA) as they move forward with plans to transform the Lodi Energy Center into the Lodi Hydrogen Center. This initiative will create a Hydrogen Hub (H2Hub) for clean energy and reduced emissions, which will play a critical role in California’s transition to carbon-free resources.
NCPA’s primary objective is to establish the Lodi Hydrogen Center as a model for renewable hydrogen production and storage. The facility aims to provide a sustainable and reliable supply of hydrogen to power the Lodi Energy Center and support medium- to heavy-duty trucking along local highway corridors, thus reducing emissions and environmental impact. Additionally, the project includes plans for utilizing hydrogen to enhance operations at the Port of Oakland, demonstrating hydrogen’s ability to impact emissions across various sectors.
As part of President Biden’s “Investing in America” agenda, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced $7 billion to launch seven Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs (H2Hubs) across the nation and accelerate the commercial-scale deployment of low-cost, clean hydrogen. The H2Hubs will be a central driver in helping communities benefit from clean energy investments, generating good-paying jobs and improving energy security. NCPA’a Lodi Energy Center Hydrogen Project, located in Lodi, California and operated by IBEW 1245 members, was included as a Tier I project through its participation in California’s Alliance for Renewable Clean Hydrogen Energy Systems (ARCHES).
Hydrogen is a clean fuel that, when consumed in a fuel cell, produces only water and can be produced from natural gas, nuclear power, biomass, and renewable power (like solar and wind). These qualities make it an attractive fuel option for transportation and electricity generation applications. It can be used in cars, in houses, for portable power, and in many more applications. Hydrogen also is an energy carrier that can be used to store, move, and deliver energy produced from other sources.
NCPA’s Lodi Hydrogen Center will feature an electrolyzer facility capable of producing 24 tons of hydrogen per day, using a proton exchange membrane electrolyzer where water can be separated into oxygen and hydrogen through a process called electrolysis, creating hydrogen from water molecules.
This innovative approach harnesses the benefits of hydrogen, offering baseload and carbon-free generation (depending on the feedstock used for hydrogen production). With the ability to produce hydrogen on-site, the facility ensures a constant supply of clean energy, supporting California’s transition to a greener grid.
For the thousands of skilled workers, including IBEW members, who participate in California’s existing energy sector, clean H2 represents another real and meaningful opportunity to participate in the state’s clean energy transition, Adding H2 to California’s energy portfolio will foster green careers across the state. These projects represent the future of California, and IBEW 1245 looks forward to working together with our community and industry partners to bring this vision to life.
–Al Fortier, IBEW 1245 Senior Assistant Business Manager