Amazon strikes green hydrogen deal with fuel cell maker Plug Power

Plug Power hydrogen supply truck.

Source: Plug Power

Shares of hydrogen fuel cell maker Plug Power closed up 9% on Thursday after Amazon stated it struck a deal with the corporate to energy a few of its operations with green hydrogen.

Amazon stated Plug will provide 10,950 tons of green hydrogen per 12 months for its transportation and constructing operations beginning in 2025. Amazon expects Plug to offer sufficient green hydrogen to energy 30,000 forklifts or 800 long-haul vehicles. As a part of the deal, Plug stated it granted the e-commerce big a warrant to purchase as much as 16 million shares at an train value of $22.9841 for the primary 9 million shares. Amazon agreed to spend $2.1 billion on Plug merchandise over the seven-year time period of the contract to ensure that its warrants to totally vest.

Hydrogen is doubtlessly helpful to struggle local weather change as a result of burning it does not generate greenhouse gasoline emissions. But the hydrogen must be synthesized first which requires vitality. One manner of creating hydrogen employs electrolysis, with an electrical present splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen. Green hydrogen is produced when the vitality used to energy this course of comes from renewable sources resembling wind or photo voltaic. It is a technique to retailer vitality from renewable vitality sources for instances when the solar is not shining or the wind is not blowing.

Experts stay divided on its effectiveness to struggle local weather change, with some believing it is neither environment friendly — it may make extra sense merely to make use of renewable electrical energy immediately when it is obtainable and depend on different sources when it is not — nor green sufficient. Loads of hydrogen produced at this time is so-called “gray” hydrogen, which suggests it is generated from burning pure gasoline or different fossil fuels.

Amazon stated the settlement will assist additional its sustainability targets, as it’ll begin to use green hydrogen to exchange grey hydrogen, diesel and different fossil fuels. Amazon hinted it hopes to make use of green hydrogen in its operations past simply powering forklifts, citing know-how resembling hydrogen fuel cells. In order to take action, “more hydrogen-powered equipment needs to be made commercially available,” it added.

Amazon unveiled its “Climate Pledge” in 2019. As a part of the plan, it dedicated to be carbon impartial by 2040 and pledged to maneuver away from gas-guzzling supply vans by agreeing to buy 100,000 electrical automobiles from Rivian Automotive.

The retail big had already been utilizing Plug’s know-how previous to Thursday’s announcement. In 2017, Amazon acquired the fitting to purchase as much as 23% of Plug. At the time, Plug stated it will provide Amazon with hydrogen fuel cells to be put in on forklifts in a handful of its warehouses.

Shares of Amazon closed up 2.6% on Thursday.

— CNBC’s Cat Clifford contributed to this story.

WATCH: Green hydrogen may assist us minimize our carbon footprint, if it overcomes some huge hurdles

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