Essar Group to invest ₹30,000 crore in green hydrogen plant and clean energy initiatives

Essar Group has announced plans to invest ₹30,000 crore over the next four years to establish a green hydrogen plant in Jamnagar, Gujarat. This initiative marks a significant step in the conglomerate’s commitment to clean energy and decarbonisation as it transitions into a new phase of growth.

Mr. Prashant Ruia, Director of Essar Capital, detailed the group’s expansive vision, which includes decarbonising its UK oil refinery, constructing a green plant in Saudi Arabia, and developing an LNG and electric ecosystem to reduce emissions from long-haul heavy trucks. Essar is also exploring the mining of critical minerals essential for electric vehicle batteries, solar panels, and wind turbine magnets.

Essar Future Energy aims to develop 1 GW of hydrogen capacity and 1 MT per annum of associated green molecules capacity in Jamnagar over the next four years. Utilising 4.5 GW of renewable energy from Essar Renewables, the plant will produce hydrogen, the cleanest known energy source, by splitting water molecules. This hydrogen will be used to create green molecules for the biofuels sector, which can be transported more efficiently than green ammonia.

Mr. Ruia emphasised the cost efficiency of transporting green molecules directly, avoiding the high costs associated with converting green ammonia back to hydrogen. Essar’s clean energy strategy also includes expanding its electricity generation capacity, with plans to grow by 10,000 MW in the next 3-5 years. This includes a significant expansion of the SalayaDevBhoomi Dwarka thermal power plant to meet Gujarat’s base-load needs.

In the realm of green mobility, Essar is developing an LNG and electric ecosystem to decarbonise heavy trucks. The group operates a fleet of 450-500 LNG-powered trucks, which significantly reduce CO2 emissions compared to diesel trucks. Essar is also building a retail network to supply LNG and expand its electric truck fleet, contributing to a cleaner transportation sector.

Essar Oil and Gas Exploration and Production Limited (EOGEPL) is India’s leading coal bed methane producer and aims to increase its contribution to the country’s total gas production to 5% within five years. The firm is also exploring shale gas opportunities in the Raniganj CBM block in West Bengal.

Internationally, Essar plans to invest $3.6 billion to decarbonize its Stanlow refinery in the UK and another $4 billion to establish a green steel plant in Saudi Arabia, utilizing hydrogen for production.

These strategic initiatives highlight Essar’s commitment to sustainable growth and clean energy solutions as it positions itself at the forefront of the global energy transition.