Neom's Enowa and off-road racing series Extreme E team up to promote green hydrogen

The entities will develop programmes to create awareness on the opportunities provided by sustainable fuel technology

Enowa, part of the $500bn futuristic megacity Neom project, will become active on Extreme E's scientific advisory board. Photo: Enowa
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Enowa, the energy, water and hydrogen unit of Saudi Arabia's $500 billion futuristic megacity Neom, signed a multiyear partnership with Extreme E racing to introduce green hydrogen power to the latter's global series.

The entities will implement green hydrogen-based technology in a bid to realise a 100 per cent “leave no trace” ambition and demonstrate opportunities the sustainable technology provides in other sectors, Enowa said in a statement on Wednesday.

Enowa will become an active member of Extreme E's scientific advisory board and together they will develop programmes to educate younger generations on climate action, it said.

"Business decisions in Neom have sustainability at their core ... our partnership is aimed towards both creating visibility to the most urgent problems the planet is facing but at the same time demonstrating solutions that deliver meaningful impact," said Peter Terium, chief executive of Enowa.

"Together we can accelerate innovations in clean technology powered by green hydrogen, contributing to hydrogen mobility markets and the future of global decarbonisation."

The Enowa-Extreme E partnership comes a day after Neom signed a strategic agreement with the UK's McLaren Racing to drive sustainability in the electric motorsport scene by developing talent and solutions.

Neom will serve as the title partner for McLaren's E Teams and the combined units will be known as Neom McLaren Electric Racing, with the Neom brand to be carried on all of the McLaren E Teams' assets.

Demand for green hydrogen — which is produced through renewable resources such as solar and wind — holds significant promise in meeting the world’s future energy demands and is expected to grow at a moderate but steady pace through niche applications until 2030, accelerating from 2035 onwards, PricewaterhouseCoopers says.

The demand by 2050 could vary from 150 million to 500 million metric tonnes a year, depending on global climate ambitions and the development of sector-specific activities, energy-efficiency measures, direct electrification and the use of carbon-capture technology, the consultancy said.

The global green hydrogen market is expected to reach almost $90bn by 2030 from $1.83bn in 2021, Canada-based firm Precedence Research estimates. The industry is expected to hit $700bn by 2050, said consultancy Arthur D Little in Brussels.

Globally, about $30bn of government subsidies for green hydrogen has already been announced as part of stimulus packages, data from the International Energy Agency indicates.

Neom and Extreme E — which is sanctioned by the FIA, the governing body of auto racing — have already joined forces for the latter's first Desert X Prix of its second season.

"The work undertaken by Enowa is extremely ambitious and an exciting prospect," said Alejandro Agag, founder and chief executive of Extreme E. "Neom, much like ourselves, pushes the boundaries of environmental sustainability and we are delighted to be partnering with Enowa to go even further in our objective to raise awareness of the climate crisis."

Neom, a major part of Saudi Arabia's programme to diversify its economy away from oil dependence, has been at the forefront the kingdom's sustainability agenda. Enowa benefits from Neom's greenfield site, which has no legacy infrastructure, to promote innovations in energy, water and hydrogen, while providing sustainable fuels like green hydrogen to users worldwide.

In March, Enowa said it will create a new Hydrogen and Innovation Development Centre to boost its research on clean fuel. Scheduled to open in 2023, the new plant will support Enowa's goal of producing large quantities of green hydrogen that can be adopted by many industries across the kingdom.

Updated: June 29, 2022, 1:38 PM