Centralia Coal Transition Board awards grant to support the OCOchem Formic Liquid Hydrogen Carrier Clean Energy Demonstration Project
Centralia, (February 1, 2023) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board is pleased to announce it has approved a grant in the amount of $751,892 to OCOchem Inc., a Richland, Washington organization that will design, develop, build, and demonstrate its large-scale formic Electrolyzer System and formic-fueled power generator. This grant award will be leveraged with grants from the Washington State Department of Commerce Clean Energy Fund, Tacoma Power, and Toyota Motor North America.
The Formic Liquid Hydrogen Carrier Clean Energy Demonstration Project will demonstrate the economic and environmental benefits of electrochemically converting clean electricity, captured carbon dioxide and water to move and store green hydrogen in a liquid hydrogen carrier form to generate distributed power that replaces the use of polluting diesel gensets at the Port of Tacoma and other locations in the State of Washington. The project will build and operate both a demonstration scale liquid hydrogen carrier production plan and a 20kW portable power system for regional deployment beginning in the early summer of 2024.
The purpose of the Energy Technology Board is to identify worthwhile and effective energy technologies to create energy, air quality, haze, or other environmental benefits for the State of Washington. This project will reduce air pollution in the form of NOx, SOx, CO, and particulate matter and improve air quality and health prospects for employees and communities. The board members look forward to monitoring this project as it moves forward.
“We are extremely grateful to theCentralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board for awarding us this grant so we can take this project to the next level,” said OCOchem CEO Todd Brix. “We are excited to demonstrate our new technology on a larger scale to help reduce the amount of new carbon in the atmosphere.”
The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington. This agreement allowed for the Centralia plant to move away from coal-fired operations with one unit retiring in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. TransAlta is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.
About OCOchem Inc.
OCOchem is developing and scaling patented and proprietary technology that electrochemically uses carbon dioxide to store energy in the chemical bonds of formates and formic acid. OCOchem was founded in 2017 in the Pacific Northwest and operates its principal R&D laboratories in Richland, Washington.
About Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards
Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:
Annual payments for the funding boards have been made since 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.
Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;
Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;
Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.