Tlou Energy to develop green and blue “hydrogen strategy” for Lesedi GTP project
Australia’s Tlou Energy hopes that its Lesedi gas-to-power (GTP) project in Botswana will serve as a springboard for blue and green hydrogen production.
In a statement dated May 28, Tlou said it intended to develop a “hydrogen strategy” to complement the GTP scheme. This strategy should be relatively easy to implement, it said, since the company has already secured some of the assets and administrative permits it will need to move into hydrogen production.
“A hydrogen strategy would benefit from Tlou’s extensive approvals secured to date, including environmental, gas and solar generation licences, access to land and established in-country operational expertise,” it explained.
“Development of hydrogen is planned to run in tandem [with the Lesedi GTP project] and with time could develop into a lucrative opportunity for the company, given the availability of Tlou’s gas and solar power,” it added.
The company went on to say that it would be able to use its entire resource base to produce hydrogen. It noted that it had access to “virtually unlimited” supplies of solar power and coal-bed methane (CBM) that could be used to generate the electricity needed to electrolyse water into hydrogen and oxygen. Additionally, it said, water is “readily available” within the acreage in Botswana.
The statement did not reveal how much hydrogen Tlou hoped to turn out in the future or when production might begin. It did say, though, that a move in this direction would “open multiple additional business opportunities such as solid carbon products, oxygen, ammonia for energy storage, fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV), agricultural and medical applications.”
In the meantime, the company is holding discussions on a $10mn financing package for the initial stage of the Lesedi GTP project, which will involve the construction of electricity transmission lines and substations. Some of the parties involved in these talks have indicated that they would prefer to see Tlou sign a 10-MW power purchase agreement (PPA) with Botswana Power Corp. (BPC) before proceeding, while others “have not expressed a specific need” to take this step beforehand, the statement said.
Tlou signed an interim PPA with BPC in January of this year, but the agreement only covers the first 2 MW of electricity from the Lesedi GTP scheme.