Entergy takes net-zero pledge, teams with Mitsubishi to decarbonize with hydrogen

October 2, 2020, 9:56AMNuclear News

Paul Browning, Mitsubishi Power, and Paul Hinnenkamp, Entergy, sign the joint agreement on September 23. Photo: Entergy

New Orleans–based Entergy Corporation last week announced a commitment to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, joining a growing list of major energy companies to make that promise—including Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Southern Company, Xcel Energy, and Public Service Enterprise Group. And, like those companies, Entergy says that it sees nuclear playing an important role in the realization of that goal.

Reaching net zero: According to Entergy’s September 24 announcement, key actions will include the following:

■ Continuing investment in existing zero-carbon nuclear power and in modern, efficient natural gas generating units, while retiring coal and older, less efficient gas-powered units. (Although the company is in the midst of a full exit from the merchant power market and has scheduled the Indian Point-3 and Palisades reactors for early retirement [in 2021 and 2022, respectively], the company remains bullish on nuclear facilities in its regulated Dixie territory, including Arkansas Nuclear One, in Russellville, Ark.; Grand Gulf, in Port Gibson, Miss.; River Bend, in St. Francisville, La.; and Waterford, in Killona, La.)

■ Evaluating and enhancing the company’s portfolio transformation with emerging technologies, such as advanced nuclear, distributed resources, alternative fuels like renewable natural gas and green hydrogen, and carbon capture and sequestration.

■ Ongoing integration of renewable energy resources, storage, and innovative applications of conventional generation into the company’s long-term generation portfolio transformation.

■ Continuing to engage with partners and gain experience enhancing natural systems such as wetlands and forests that absorb carbon.

■ Working across and between sectors, such as transportation and industry, on beneficial electrification and net emission-reduction initiatives.

■ Collaborating with customers, key suppliers, and industry partners to advance the technologies and strategies necessary to reduce carbon emissions.

A new partner: Entergy’s net-zero news came just one day after the company announced the signing of a joint development agreement with Mitsubishi Power, a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, to bring decarbonization projects to Entergy’s utility businesses in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas.

The partnership, according to Entergy, will focus on the following:

■ Developing hydrogen-capable gas turbine combined-cycle facilities.

■ Developing green hydrogen production, storage, and transportation facilities.

■ Creating nuclear-supplied electrolysis facilities with energy storage.

■ Developing utility-scale battery storage systems.

■ Enabling economic growth through partnerships with Entergy utility customers.

“Mitsubishi Power is a first mover in hydrogen-enabled gas turbine and long- and short-term storage solutions,” Entergy said in its announcement of the agreement. “It also provides the world’s first and only standard integrated green hydrogen packages. The Hydaptive and Hystore packages optimize integration across renewables, energy storage, and hydrogen-enabled gas-turbine power plants, which all work together to create and incorporate green hydrogen—a key to reaching carbonless emissions.”

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