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Michigan Leads on Hydrogen

Michigan Leads on Hydrogen

Michigan Leads on Hydrogen

Bringing Clean Energy to Michigan

Hydrogen is widely recognized as a potential game changer in the global effort to address climate change. The biproducts of combusting hydrogen, or using it in a fuel cell, are energy and water, making it a 100% clean source of energy. New federal funding has been made available to support the development of the hydrogen supply chain, expand the production of clean “pink” and “green” hydrogen, and integrate this fuel into existing industrial processes effectively and affordably. The State of Michigan supports these efforts and is working hard to make the U.S. Department of Energy’s vision of a hydrogen economy a reality.  

Investments in the development of a robust clean hydrogen market, supply chain, and workforce also have a strong potential to create good-paying jobs, expand economic opportunities, promote energy independence, and improve public health outcomes in the Great Lakes state. Michigan companies and institutions are already working towards these goals and the State of Michigan is helping to lead the way with streamlined permitting, technical assistance, and other support. Applications from both the State and Michigan-based organizations to programs like the Department of Energy’s Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs program mean hundreds of millions of dollars and thousands of jobs could be coming to Michigan in the near future. 

We’re also working closely with our neighbors to develop a strong regional hydrogen economy. Michigan is proud to be a leading member of the Midwestern Hydrogen Coalition which is committed to accelerating and improving clean hydrogen production, processing, and use throughout the region. Our state is also working closely with the province of Ontario to think about the road ahead and what a new hydrogen economy means for companies and residents with interests on both sides of the border.

Hydrogen Means Big Benefits for Michigan

  • Presents enormous opportunity for innovation and further investment in our state’s energy sector
  • Leverages Michigan’s unique economic and natural assets to help create and advance a thriving Midwestern hydrogen economy
  • Enables existing industries to remain globally competitive, including maintaining the strength of MI’s manufacturing workforce, while catalyzing new business opportunities with high-paying jobs
  • Enhances energy security and produces long-term reductions in energy costs for consumers and industries across multiple sectors
  • Dramatically reduces pollution in the hardest-to-abate sectors
  • Helps position Michigan as a national leader in the ongoing transition to a clean, affordable, and reliable energy sector

Featured Hydrogen Projects, Institutions, and Opportunities in Michigan 

  • The Truck Stop of the Future – a reimagining of the role of a travel center within the broader transportation ecosystem and its relationship to other critical infrastructure. This facility will feature refueling for medium and heavy-duty trucks powered by hydrogen and batteries and include the potential to create clean, zero-emission electricity for the regional electrical grid, refuel hydrogen locomotives and watercraft, support research and development of new technologies, and support the broader hydrogen supply chain.
  • Albion College Hydrogen Project (ACH2) – Developed by EIS-H2, the ACH2 project involves a suite of improvements centered around upgrading the energy infrastructure of the campus resulting in increased energy-efficiency, the implementation of renewable energy generation and related technologies, and the production of clean “Green Hydrogen”. Utilizing solar power, advanced hydrogen-ready turbines, and artificial intelligence, this project represents a potential reduction of 2,860 tons of carbon emissions annually. Additional benefits include providing hydrogen for transportation end-uses and supporting the creation of an educational curriculum and technical training program for hydrogen R&D and workforce development, one of the first of its kind in the Midwest. For more information, contact
  • Flint MTA Transportation Project – Flint MTA is working to expand their existing hydrogen production and fleet of fuel-cell buses. A national leader in hydrogen transit, Flint MTA is setting an example for other regional transit authorities as well as supporting the development of a hydrogen supply chain in Flint. The authority has already begun to secure customers for hydrogen produced on site at their facility, thereby supporting more than just transportation focused applications for hydrogen.
  • The American Center for Mobility – ACM is a national leader in exploring the mobility issues of the future and their project, a part of the MachH2 regional hydrogen Clean Hydrogen Hubs application, will provide ACM with on-site hydrogen generation, the potential for supporting advanced hydrogen R&D, and a key role within the southeast Michigan hydrogen supply chain.   
  • The University of Michigan Hydrogen Institute - MI Hydrogen, a joint venture by the Office of the Vice President for Research, Michigan Engineering and the School for Environment and Sustainability, will foster collaboration among U-M researchers, community groups, government and industry partners so they can address existing knowledge gaps and develop strategies to help society transition toward an energy future that is equitable, affordable, clean and secure. The initiative, which will engage faculty across disciplines, is designed to provide the leading research necessary to accelerate the use of hydrogen beyond current industrial limits.
  • Michigan’s Waterways – While there are many ways to move Hydrogen from A to B, the Great Lakes offer a unique opportunity for the Midwest. Rather than moving hydrogen by truck, rail, or pipeline some have suggested that moving hydrogen via a tanker vessel, as we already do with natural gas, would be a cleaner and more cost-effective method of distributing this fuel to the region. These ships have already been introduced in Europe and could soon be ready for use here in the United States.
  • Michigan’s Unique Geology – As with any fuel, a key part of the supply chain will be ensuring that sizeable reserves are available at all times. While hydrogen can be stored for long periods in above ground tanks, certain areas of the United States have the potential to store sizeable quantities of hydrogen underground. Thanks to our considerable salt deposits, Michigan could be one of the few states with the ability to store mass quantities in this manner. Rock salt has a very low hydrogen permeability, which ensures minimal loss of hydrogen or contamination with the geological surroundings. Hydrogen produced in Michigan could be safely and securely stored underground until needed. Furthermore, such facilities could act as backup generators by using stored hydrogen to power electricity generating equipment at times of high demand on the grid. Paired with green hydrogen production, this underground “battery” could further support the build out of renewable energy. 
  • Michigan’s Geography – Situated at the center of the largest freight corridor in North America, Michigan’s border crossings with Canada are responsible for over 40% of all commercial trade between our two countries. Any effort geared towards decarbonizing medium and heavy-duty traffic along this Chicago – Toronto corridor will need to focus on Michigan’s transportation infrastructure. This idea underlies the State of Michigan’s efforts around the Truck Stop of the Future which aims to build out the next generation of refueling equipment.  

"The Midwest will continue leading the
future of mobility and energy innovation
and has enormous potential for
transformative hydrogen investments."

– Governor Gretchen Whitmer

Headshot of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in front of the Mackinac Bridge.

The State of Michigan
Hydrogen Working Group

• Nadia Abunasser
 • Cory Connolly
• Zachary Kolodin
• Kevin Mehren
• Quentin L. Messer Jr.
• Sarah Mullkoff
•Kathryn Snorrason
• Katherine L. Peretick

Please direct any questions or comments to
Zachary Kolodin at