Fortescue Metals Group Ltd has achieved a significant milestone following Board approval of a Final Investment Decision (FID) on the Phoenix Hydrogen Hub in the US, the Gladstone PEM50 Project in Queensland, and a Green Iron Trial Commercial Plant in Western Australia.
Additionally, the Board has fast-tracked three projects, Pecem in Brazil, Project Chui in Kenya, and Holmaneset in Norway, to establish a global glide path for Fortescue Energy and its green hydrogen technologies and industries. The total investment is estimated at around US$750 million over the next three years.
These are three of the first green hydrogen deals to reach FID in the United States and Australia, with a pipeline of projects to follow that will considerably scale up Fortescue’s global green energy production based on the lessons learned from these initial three projects. They represent Fortescue’s Board’s goal of demonstrating green hydrogen commercial scale production in the United States, electrolyser capacity and performance in Queensland, and new pure green ironmaking in Western Australia. As Australia struggles to shed its petrostate status and faces structurally high green electricity costs, Queensland’s Gibson Island Green Hydrogen and Ammonia Project needs additional work.
“Diversity in technology and geography at conservative scales for Fortescue projects reflects our disciplined approach to learning while we do, prior to large scale investments,” Fortescue Energy CEO Mark Hutchinson said.
Phoenix Hydrogen Hub, an 80MW electrolyser and liquefaction facility in Arizona, USA, has a production capacity of up to 11,000 tonnes per annum of liquid green hydrogen, with a total investment of approximately US$550 million.
“The Phoenix Hydrogen Hub establishes Fortescue in one of the most attractive energy markets in the world, facilitated by the Inflation Reduction Act,” Hutchinson stated.
“The proximity to California, a primary heavy haulage trucking route and the most progressive US State to adopt and incentive clean hydrogen, primes Fortescue well to deliver value into the US domestic market.”
Gladstone PEM50 Project, a 50MW green hydrogen project using Fortescue’s electrolyser technology, is set to commence production in 2025 with a total investment of up to $150 million.
“Gladstone PEM5 Project in Queensland will produce hydrogen at an industrial scale, allowing us to demonstrate the high quality of Fortescue’s own hydrogen systems,” Hutchinson noted.
Meanwhile, an investment of up to $50 million has been approved for the construction of a Green Iron Trial Commercial Plant at Christmas Creek, which will utilise existing green hydrogen and electricity, hematite and magnetite ore production capacity, and existing infrastructure and technical capacity.
“Fortescue is taking a proactive approach to green iron, including embracing innovative technologies that will help us step away from the use of fossil fuels,” Fortescue Metals CEO Dino Otranto said.
“We are confident that our approach will drive growth for Fortescue through new, high value products being sold into new markets, ultimately leading to an increase in the number of iron units we sell.”