When it comes to energy security and foreign relations, few countries if any can lay claim to the closeness that Canada and the United States have shared. For as long as the oil has been drawn from the earth in North America, the US has needed Canada’s oil reserves. That need has served the latter just fine, as Canada has always required somewhere to ship its crude.
With climate change and pending environmental catastrophe driving the transition to green energy sources, however, that relationship has seen some strain. Notably, the Keystone XLII pipeline was first strongarmed by former-President Trump and then canceled by now President Joe Biden. This caused a major upset in Alberta, where the provincial government had already invested hundreds of millions, but at a higher level cast doubt on the future of Canada’s oil sector.
American green energy jumped to 20% of energy production
America has been making strides to invest in green energy and make the transition to cleaner sources. According to Deloitte Insights, between 2010 and 2020, green energy jumped from 10 to 20% of the US’ overall energy production.
That’s certainly impressive growth, but the analysts at Deloitte go on to predict that the US will need to add 140 – 200 GW of green power every year to decarbonize their energy sector by their goal of somewhere between 2015 and 2050. No wonder President Biden isn’t investing in pipelines.
This has been a cause of concern for many—if the US doesn’t need as much Canadian oil, they will have to ship it elsewhere. That is unless they can find a way to grow together. That’s where Next Hydrogen comes in.
Green Hydrogen Hubs
With the green transition presenting such a complex and monumental task ahead of not only North America but the entire world, the repercussions are still being assessed. A hydrogen company from Mississauga, Ontario has come up with a strategy that just might help Canada to maintain its traditional role as an energy partner to the US through the green transition.
Green hydrogen hubs are another source of energy. A hub is not a single service, but rather a grouping together of many hydrogen energy services. This allows for a centralized infrastructure and the development and distribution of hydrogen-based energy.
$8 Billion Funding
The aim of Next Hydrogen and its scores of partners—including the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, is to take advantage of an $8 billion funding initiative for the US Department of Energy and provide a hydrogen hub for the North-Eastern portion of the continent. While this could lead to potentially great news for the company, its partners, and the region—it also provides a model of what the sector’s relations between Canada and the US could look like as the world moves to greener sources of energy.
With energy security among the highest challenges, the ramifications of maintaining the traditionally mutually-beneficial relationship could mean good things for both nations.