The Use Of Hydrogen In The Energy System In Malaysia And The Relevant Laws And Regulations

Published date10 January 2023
Subject MatterEnvironment, Energy and Natural Resources, Energy Law, Environmental Law, Oil, Gas & Electricity, Chemicals, Renewables
Law FirmAzmi & Associates
AuthorMahadi Abdullah and Nafis Zain Safwan Majid Zain

With the global concern on Climate Change and the need to reduce the use of fossil fuels such as oil and gas as the source of energy because of its negative impact towards the environment, there is a need to move towards renewable energies and more environmentally friendly fuels. One form of energy which is being advocated is Hydrogen.

Based on the source and production process, Hydrogen is commonly classified today in three categories - Grey Hydrogen, Blue Hydrogen and Green Hydrogen.

Grey Hydrogen is sourced from natural gas and is produced by a method called steam methane reforming which emits large amounts of carbon dioxide. Blue Hydrogen is produced the same way as Grey Hydrogen but the carbon dioxide is captured and stored under the Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage ("CCUS") methodology. Lastly, Green Hydrogen is produced by the electrolysis of water which splits water molecules into oxygen and Hydrogen using renewable energy such as solar energy, wind energy and hydroelectric energy1.


Hydrogen in Malaysia

In 2001, Malaysia identified Hydrogen fuel cells as a priority research area and R&D funds were allocated. A Hydrogen road map was formulated in 2006 and a blueprint for fuel cell industries in Malaysia was published in 20172.

PETRONAS has conducted studies with academic institutions on the production of Hydrogen from biomass waste3 and from water through electrolysis which resulted in the development of the PETRONAS Advanced Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) Electrolyser4. PETRONAS has also collaborated with commercial entities such as ENEOS Corporation (ENEOS) on Hydrogen production and its transportation in methylcyclohexane (MCH) form and IHI Corporation and TNB Genko on Hydrogen and Ammonia supply chain in Malaysia5.

Sarawak has taken steps for the production and use of Hydrogen, being well-placed in the supply of natural gas and also hydroelectricity. Sarawak introduced Hydrogen-powered electric vehicles ("EV") (Hydrogen-powered buses) in 2020 and in July 2022, Sarawak implemented the Kuching Urban Transportation System (KUTS) Project involving Hydrogen fuel cell-powered Autonomous Rapid Transit (ART) vehicles6.

A MOU was entered into between Sarawak Energy, SEDC Energy, Samsung Engineering, Lotte Chemical, and Posco Holdings for the supply of renewable hydropower for a Green Hydrogen and Ammonia project in Sarawak7. SEDC Energy, H2X and Thales New Energy collaborated in a Hydrogen export facility to produce Green...

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