The Chinese city of Shanghai’s municipal government has pledged to develop an offshore wind-to-hydrogen pilot project as part of its 2023-2026 work plan published at the end of last week.

The government will provide support for offshore wind projects which produce green hydrogen during “high-fluctuation power output conditions”, likely to mean electricity that would otherwise be curtailed.

These pilots are also expected to feed into potential standards around so-called “peak shaving”, or using hydrogen-fuelled power to produce dispatchable power during spikes in power demand.

Shanghai is the location of the first commercial-scale offshore wind farm in China, Donghai Bridge, which was installed in 2010. The municipality’s latest tender for 800MW of offshore wind reportedly saw bids of 0.207-0.247 yuan/kWh ($0.02-0.03/kWh), suggesting an extremely cheap source of power for green H2 production.

The Shanghai government in July issued a hydrogen mobility work plan up to 2025 which targeted 10,000 fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) and at least 70 hydrogen refuelling stations on its roads, as well as H2 end-use demonstrations in specific districts and regions of the city, including Jiading, Qingpu, Jinshan — which includes the Shanghai Chemical Industry Park — and the planned Lingang development.

China has also seen this year the first volumes of H2 directly produced from seawater at a floating electrolyser platform co-located with the Xinghua Bay offshore wind farm off Fujian province.

In April, French energy company EDF and state-owned China Energy Investment Corporation (CEIC) announced a giant 1.5GW wind and solar “energy island”, which would integrate hydrogen production and storage as part of the project, although no electrolyser capacity has been disclosed.

This story was first published in Recharge's sister publication Hydrogen Insight