The Enbridge Hydrogen Hub promises a strategic advantage for businesses looking to build in the Markham Innovation Exchange (MiX), a planned public and privately owned innovation district situated on 1,920 acres adjacent to Highway 404. “As Ontario’s first innovation cluster connecting knowledge and production, the MiX promises to be a space where world-class ideas and products are developed,” said Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti.
Enbridge’s hydrogen hub is North America’s first utility-scale Power-to-Gas facility, which generates low-carbon hydrogen through electrolysis using power from Ontario’s electrical grid. Currently, a portion of hydrogen produced at the facility is blended into the local natural gas distribution system to lower emissions. This is the first blending project of its kind in North America, and is capable of being used with customers’ existing systems.
Enbridge has also installed the first of its kind Combined Heat and Power (CHP) system in North America, at it’s Technology Operations Centre in Markham. Once commissioned, the system will be able to run on hydrogen produced from its Power-to-Gas facility, natural gas, or a mixture of both gasses. Additionally, Enbridge is looking into expanding its existing facility with the addition of a hydrogen vehicle fueling station for its fleet.
“Low-carbon hydrogen offers a tremendous opportunity to advance the shift to sustainable energy solutions and is an important example of the investments Enbridge Gas is making across multiple markets to green the natural gas grid while continuing to meet the demand for safe, reliable and affordable energy,” said Michele Harradence, President, Enbridge Gas.
The facility’s proximity to MiX bodes well for the planned innovation district, promising a steady supply of clean energy opportunities.
The innovation district will create a hub for research, training and production, strengthening the domestic supply chain and capitalizing on Markham’s rich array of high-tech talent. The city already boasts the largest concentration of tech firms per 1,000 residents among Canadian tech hubs with a population greater than 250,000. MiX companies will also benefit from proximity to the Canadian headquarters of major technology companies including IBM, Advance Micro Devices and Qualcomm.
“Markham’s GHG per capita is among the lowest of any large municipality in Canada and our municipal energy plan targets net zero emissions by 2050,” says Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti. “Low-carbon hydrogen is going to play a role in helping us do so and MiX companies have an opportunity to be at the forefront of this more sustainably-fuelled world.”