NORMAN, OKLA. – Tomás Díaz de la Rubia, University of Oklahoma’s vice president for research and partnerships, has been selected to represent the contributions of research and workforce development across Oklahoma’s higher education institutions in a newly formed state-led task force to investigate the issues regarding hydrogen production and distribution in Oklahoma.
“Oklahoma’s institutions of higher education have a vital role in the success of growing a hydrogen economy for the state,” said Díaz de la Rubia. "I’m grateful to Oklahoma Senate President Pro Tempore, Mr. Greg Treat, for his nomination and the opportunity to serve on this Task Force to provide insight into the research and workforce development that will aid in informing the task force’s recommendations. I am proud to serve in this role and draw in the expertise of our Oklahoma university ecosystem.”
Oklahoma Secretary of Energy and Environment Kenneth Wagner, with Senate Floor Leader Kim David as the Senate co-chair and Rep. Mark McBride as the House co-chair, lead the Hydrogen Production, Transportation and Infrastructure Task Force in accordance with SB1021, which was passed by the legislature and signed into law this past legislative session.
“Hydrogen represents an opportunity to utilize many of our most important resources here in Oklahoma, including our workforce,” said Secretary Wagner in a news release. “This Task Force is the way to give everyone a voice in how we maximize opportunities for all Oklahomans. We are excited to get to work.”
The task force will discuss opportunities in Oklahoma regarding hydrogen production including the use and availability of water resources, availability of resources necessary for producing hydrogen at cost competitive market, strategies to encourage development of hydrogen technology, infrastructure and transportation, and developing a state-wide roadmap for a hydrogen economy.
The task force will additionally focus on hydrogen distribution, including investigating the viability of using existing pipeline infrastructure for moving hydrogen fuel, investigating the needs of the pipeline industry to integrate hydrogen fuel, as well as investigating pipeline safety standards for hydrogen fuel distribution.
The task force will report its findings and recommendations to the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives by its culmination on Dec. 1, 2021.