Last month, Obsidian Renewables, an Oregon solar energy company, launched a bid to win federal dollars to create a green hydrogen production network across Oregon and Washington.

The company applied to the U.S. Department of Energy to become a green hydrogen hub for the region, producing, storing and transporting the mostly emissions-free gas.

Hydrogen power produces twice as much energy as gasoline, takes up half as much space and is lighter than a lithium battery, meaning it could be used for large transport vessels such as planes, trains and ships and to produce materials that require a lot of energy. Hydrogen fuel cells don’t require time-consuming charges, and can withstand cold weather that can eat up electric battery power.

An Oregon-Washington partnership, the Pacific Northwest Hydrogen Association (PNWH2), has also applied for money to become a Northwest hydrogen hub.

The PNWH2 includes the Oregon Department of Energy’s Director Janine Benner, the director of Washington’s Department of Commerce; the chief operating officer of the Cowlitz Indian Tribe; Amazon’s leading global hydrogen strategist; a government affairs official at BP America, an oil company; three labor unions; and the Sierra Club, among others.

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