TotalEnergies has announced its Texas plant can produce sustainably certified polymers for a wide range of purposes. Photo via totalenergies.com

For the first time in the United States, a global energy company has converted plastic waste into circular polymers.

TotalEnergies announced its milestone that took place at its polypropylene plant in La Porte, Texas. The plant, according to the company, will produce sustainably certified polymers for a wide range of purposes, including food grade packaging.

"After Europe, this first production of circular polymers from advanced recycling in the United States is a new step forward in our commitment to meeting the global market's growing demand for more innovative and sustainable plastics, as well as in our ambition to produce one million tons of circular polymers a year by 2030," Heather Tomas, Vice President Polymers Americas, says in the news release.

New Hope Energy's recycling facility in Tyler, Texas, provided the feedstock, which was converted into monomers at BASF TotalEnergies Petrochemicals facility in Port Arthur, Texas. BTP is a joint venture between BASF and TotalEnergies.

"We are excited to partner with TotalEnergies in our mutual effort to transform plastic for a cleaner world," Rusty Combs, CEO of New Hope Energy, says in the release. "This supply agreement is an important step towards achieving New Hope's goal of creating pyrolysis projects at a scale that will materially improve the nation's plastic recycling performance. We are honored by the confidence TotalEnergies has placed in both our team and our robust technology."

Greentown Labs has a new Terawatt Partner. Photo courtesy of Greentown Labs

TotalEnergies signs on as top-level partner at climatetech incubator

onboarding

Greentown Labs, dual located in Houston and Somerville, Massachusetts, has named its latest top-level partner.

TotalEnergies has joined the incubator at the the highest level of partnership — the Terawatt level — Greentown Labs announced on January 23. Through the partnership, TotalEnergies will have access to Greentown's membership of clean energy startups and event programming.

Lotfi Hedhli, president at TotalEnergies Research & Technology U.S., will participate on Greentown’s Industry Leadership Council, providing strategic guidance to the incubator.

“We are excited to join Greentown Labs and its ecosystem to catalyze the development of potential decarbonization technologies through collaboration with promising startups,” Hedhli says in a news release. “This partnership with Greentown Labs will focus in particular on the deployment and use of renewables and low-carbon solutions, which are critical to our ambition to achieve carbon neutrality.”

TotalEnergies is among the world's largest utility-scale solar developers with activity in over 30 states in the country, including a Houston-area solar farm that went online in October. Additionally, TotalEnergies announced in November that it signed an agreement with TexGen to acquire $635 million three gas-fired power plants with a total capacity of 1.5 GW in Texas.

“At Greentown Labs, we continue to recognize and appreciate the role energy leaders play in the clean energy transition and we’re proud to have TotalEnergies join us as a Terawatt Partner,” Greentown Labs CEO and President Kevin Knobloch says in the news release. “We applaud the meaningful steps TotalEnergies is taking to expand its renewable energy portfolio and generation, and we’re eager to have their team of experts engaging directly with our climatetech entrepreneurs.”

Greentown last named a Terawatt Partner — GE Vernova — last fall.

The three plants are all connected to ERCOT, with two of them being in Houston and its surrounding areas. Photo via totalenergies.com

New agreement to bring more energy in Texas online

more power

Houston, we have some (more) power. TotalEnergies has signed an agreement with TexGen to acquire $635 million three gas-fired power plants with a total capacity of 1.5 GW in Texas.

The three plants are all connected to ERCOT, with two of them being in Houston and its surrounding areas. The transaction is subject to approval by relevant authorities.

Houston’s plants will include a La Porte site with a 150 MW OCGT, southeast of Houston, and south of Houston’s Colorado Bend I plant with a 530 MW CCGT and a 74 MW open-cycle gas turbine (OCGT). The two added plants may provide flexibility and added insurance to meet the high demands of the summer heat in Texas. The third plant will be Wolf Hollow I plant with a 745 MW combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) plant outside of Dallas.

According to TotalEnergies, the locations of the plants will help serve the massive energy demand of the large cities and will help to offset the “intermittency of renewable power production,” as well as “the importance of the plants was highlighted during weather events that impacted power generation from renewable assets in Texas,” or was met with high demands.

The deal includes 1.5 GW additional flexible production capacity acquired by TotalEnergies that will complement its renewable capacity in Texas , which is currently 2 GW gross installed, 2 GW under construction and more than 3 GW under development .

“"We are delighted with the agreement signed with TexGen to acquire 1.5 GW of CCGT in ERCOT, “said Stephane Michel, President Gas Renewables & Power at TotalEnergies in a news release. “After the signing of several corporate PPA over the last couple of years and the recent start-up of the utility-scale Myrtle solar plant, this deal is a major milestone for our Integrated Power strategy in the ERCOT market. These plants will enable us to complement our renewable assets, intermittent by nature, provide our customers with firm power, and take advantage of the volatility of electricity prices.

"This acquisition will contribute positively to our profitability target of 12% ROACE by 2028 for our Integrated Power business segment,” Michel continues.

The Myrtle solar plant opened last month just outside of Houston.

TotalEnergies' new solar farm outside of Houston is the size of 1,800 football fields. Photo via totalenergies.com

Global energy company opens solar farm outside of Houston

up & running

A global energy corporation has a new solar farm online and operating just outside of Houston.

TotalEnergies (NYSE: TTE) has started commercial operations of its new solar farm, Myrtle Solar, just south of Houston. The farm has a capacity of 380 megawatts peak of solar production and 225 MWh of co-located batteries. Spread across the space — which is about the size of 1,800 football fields — are 705,000 solar panels producing enough electricity to power 70,000 homes.

Seventy percent of the power generated will be sourced for TotalEnergies' industrial plants in the U.S. Gulf Coast region, and the remaining 30 percent will be used by Kilroy Realty, a publicly traded real estate company, per a 15-year corporate power purchase agreement.

“We are very proud to start up Myrtle, TotalEnergies’ largest-to-date operated utility-scale solar farm with storage in the United States. This startup is another milestone in achieving our goal to build an integrated and profitable position in Texas, where ERCOT is the main electrical grid operator," Vincent Stoquart, senior vice president of renewables at TotalEnergies, says in the release. "Besides, the project will enable the Company to cover the power needs of some of its biggest U.S. industrial sites with electricity from a renewable source."

The farm is part of the company’s Go Green Project that is hoping to enable the company to cover its power needs by 2025, as well as curtail the Scope 1+2 emissions of its industrial sites in the Gulf Coast area, including Port Arthur and La Porte in Texas and Carville, Louisiana.

“Given the advantages that IRA tax exemptions are generating, we will continue to actively develop our 25 GW portfolio of projects in operation or development in the United States, to contribute to the Company’s global power generation target of more than 100 TWh by 2030,” Stoquart continues.

Myrtle Solar is also equipped with 114 high-tech Energy Storage Systems with a total capacity of 225 MWh. The technology was provided by TotalEnergies' affiliate Saft.

NextDecade enters a deal with two major investors to move toward final investment decision for the Rio Grande LNG Project. Image via Shutterstock.

Latest collaborative agreement brings Texas LNG export facility one step closer to reality

MAKING PROGRESS

The Rio Grande LNG Project (RGLNG), an LNG export facility in Cameron County, Texas with planned capacity for exporting up to 27 million tons of LNG per year, makes a giant leap toward the final investment decision stage with the latest agreements signed by NextDecade Energy announced earlier today.

Entry to this next phase includes executing investor agreements with Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) and TotalEnergies (TTE). In addition, TTE commits to purchasing 5.4 million tons of LNG annually for the next 20 years from the first three trains (RGLNG Phase 1) that will transport to the facility, with additional options to purchase from subsequent trains.

“This announcement marks a momentous milestone for NextDecade,” said Matt Schatzman, chairman and CEO of NextDecade, in the release. “We are excited to work with GIP and TotalEnergies on RGLNG and our proposed CCS project at RGLNG. We are also eager to grow our partnership with GIP and TotalEnergies focusing on our shared vision to reduce carbon emissions in the energy sector.”

“With the world increasingly moving toward sustainable solutions, this partnership among GIP, TotalEnergies and NextDecade reinforces our shared commitment to helping lead the transition and shaping of the future of energy,” added Bayo Ogunlesi, chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Global Infrastructure Partners. “This venture marks a critical step in displacing coal usage and upholds GIP’s commitment to promoting decarbonization, energy security and energy affordability. Our shared vision with TotalEnergies and NextDecade, combined with our capabilities, will undoubtedly help catalyze the development of cleaner energy.”

"We are delighted to join forces with NextDecade and GIP on the development of this new US LNG project, for which TotalEnergies shall leverage its extensive experience in LNG and technical expertise in major industrial project development," commented Patrick Pouyanné, chairman and CEO of TotalEnergies. “Our involvement in this project will enhance our LNG capacity by 5.4 MTPA strengthening our ability to ensure Europe's gas supply security and to provide Asian customers with an alternative fuel that emits half as much as coal.”

Pending execution of the FID and definitive documentation, GIP becomes the majority investor in Phase 1 of the RGLNG, and TTE will acquire another 16.67%. Both companies will also have options to invest in Trains 4 and 5 servicing the South Texas LNG export facility and options to invest in future carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) efforts planned for RGNLG.

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Houston tech co. to build powerful supercomputer for global energy business to help reach net-zero goals

getting upgraded

A Houston tech company is building a next-generation supercomputer for one of the world’s largest energy providers.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced its plans to build HPC6 for Italian energy company Eni. Eni will use the system to advance scientific discovery and engineering toward accelerating innovation in energy transition to help aid its goal in getting to net zero. HPC6 is expected to be one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers owned by an enterprise.

HPC6 will be built with the same innovations that power the world’s fastest supercomputer to support data and image-intensive workloads across artificial intelligence, modeling, and simulation. According to a news release from HPE, the system will “augment Eni’s existing research that is focused on studying and identifying new energy sources, including renewable energy.”

Eni’s HPC6 will be installed in the company’s energy Green Data Center in Italy. The center will be upgraded to support HPE’s direct liquid-cooling (DLC) capabilities.

"Businesses are finding themselves balancing the huge business opportunities enabled by their AI investments with the responsibility of mitigating the environmental impact of these powerful systems," Antonio Neri, president and CEO of HPE, says in a news release.

"As the leader in developing energy efficient AI and supercomputing solutions, HPE is uniquely positioned to help organizations minimize power consumption while maximizing business outcomes," he continues. "We are excited to play a role in Eni’s commitment to decarbonization supported by digitalization and innovation."

Originally announced in 2020, HPE moved its headquarters to Houston in 2022.

3 companies collaborate to build green hydrogen facility in Houston

team work

Three corporations have teamed up to deliver a first-of-its-kind hydrogen production project to be located in the Houston area.

California-based HNO International Inc. has teamed up with Colorado-based Element One Energy and Houston-based Pneumatic and Hydraulic Co. to develop a hydrogen production facility that will produce 500 kilograms of green hydrogen a day.

"This collaboration represents a major milestone in our commitment to sustainable energy solutions," Donald Owens, chairman at HNO International, says in a news release. "The development of the 500kg per day green hydrogen production facility in Houston is a testament to our dedication to advancing sustainable hydrogen infrastructure.

"This facility is just the beginning, as we have plans for additional installations in 2024, 2025, and beyond, further solidifying our position as leaders in the hydrogen energy infrastructure sector," he continues.

The facility will install HNO International's Scalable Hydrogen Energy Platform, or SHEP, a hydrogen energy system that's designed to produce, store, and dispense green hydrogen from water using a 1.25 megawatt electrolyzer. SHEP is scalable, modular, and compact, requiring less than 3,000 square feet of space.

For 60 years, Pneumatic and Hydraulic Co. has worked in the compressed gas industry with its hydrogen division Total Hydrogen Solutions, serving a range of industries, including notable aerospace clients like SpaceX, Blue Origin, NASA,

Element One Energy designs and manufactures electrolyzers and solid-state hydrogen storage systems with over 20 years of engineering experience with cryogenic storage and high pressures.