India rolls out program to support green hydrogen ship retrofits
India’s government has released a new scheme that aims to support retrofitting existing vessels to run on green hydrogen.
The scheme will also support the development of bunkering and refueling facilities in ports for green hydrogen-based fuels.
The scheme guidelines, titled Scheme Guidelines for implementation of Pilot projects for use of Green Hydrogen in the Shipping Sector under the National Green Hydrogen Mission (NGHM), were published by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy on February 1, 2024.
The total budget for projects under this scheme amounts to Rs 115 crores (about $13.8 million).
Specifically, the objectives of the new guidelines are:
- To support the deployment of green hydrogen and its derivatives as fuel for ship propulsion, including bunkering and refueling, on a pilot basis;
- To validate the technical feasibility and performance of green hydrogen and its derivatives based ship propulsion in real-world operational conditions;
- To evaluate the economic viability of the use of green hydrogen and its derivatives in the shipping sector;
- To assess the effectiveness of green hydrogen and its derivatives in ship propulsion and bunkering & refueling systems on ports;
- To evaluate the performance of green hydrogen and its derivatives based propulsion system, bunkering and refueling systems, and identify the areas for improvement; and
- To demonstrate safe and secure operations of green hydrogen and its derivatives based propulsion system, bunkering and refueling system.
In January 2023, India launched its National Green Hydrogen Mission with an aim to make India a global hub for production, usage, and export of green hydrogen and its derivatives. It will contribute to India’s goal to become self-reliant through clean energy. The mission intends to lead to significant decarbonization of the economy and reduced dependence on fossil fuel imports.
Shipping and port operations are among the key sectors likely to drive the future green hydrogen demand and trade. Maritime transport and ports have significant potential for decarbonization through the use of green hydrogen or its derivatives such as green ammonia / green methanol as fuel for propulsion and other operations.
Prospects in the sector include the development of refueling hubs of green hydrogen and its derivatives at Indian ports; the development and operation of green hydrogen or its derivatives based ship propulsion systems; use of green hydrogen or its derivatives to fuel zero-emission technologies for vehicles and terminal equipment at ports; and development of supply chains and capabilities to support the export of green hydrogen and its derivatives from India.
To assess the potential for the use of green hydrogen and its derivatives in the shipping sector, the mission recognized the need for initiating pilot projects in the sector.
The Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) will retrofit at least two ships to run on green hydrogen or its derivatives by the year 2027, the ministry said in the newly published document.
The mission also provides for setting up green ammonia bunkers and refueling facilities in at least one port by the year 2025.