Democratic lawmakers are looking for incentives for hydrogen production

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SANTA FE, NM (AP) — New Mexico lawmakers are proposing a series of financial incentives aimed at boosting hydrogen fuel production and distribution in New Mexico in a bill released Tuesday.

Stimuli in the lengthy proposal include tax credits and deductions for private companies and loans covered by local taxpayers.

Environmentalists are wary of the impact of hydrogen production, which uses natural gas for its energy source and feedstock, arguing that it can prolong dependence on fossil fuels and relies on relatively untested carbon pollution capture and disposal technologies.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham supports the initiative and says hydrogen producers that use cleaner methods can qualify for bigger tax incentives under the proposed legislation.

At the same time, under an infrastructure bill signed by President Joe Biden in November 2021, the US government is allocating $8 billion to hydrogen projects to develop cleaner fuel sources for industrial sectors and the use of fuel cell vehicles in heavy-duty, long-distance transportation.


The New Mexico stimulus is being proposed by lawmakers including Democratic Representatives Patricia Lundstrom of Gallup, Javier Martínez of Albuquerque and Nathan Small of Las Cruces.

“This law ensures that the growing hydrogen economy is consistent with New Mexico’s ambitious climate goals while also creating clean energy jobs for New Mexicans,” the governor’s office said in an email.

By providing financial incentives for “clean” hydrogen plants, the bill sets limits and guidelines for climate-warming by-products from hydrogen production.

New Mexico’s regular annual legislative session ends on February 17.

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