At present, only about 1,000 tons of hydrogen production are destined for energy each year, mostly for hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles but as the research paper foresees, the demand for hydrogen for heating residential and commercial space, heat for industry, and transport will increase between 39 and 161 million tons of hydrogen annually in 2050.
On November 27, the UN Environment Emissions Gap Report revealed that atmospheric levels of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide surged for the first time in four years in 2017. The UN Environment Programme warned that if the gap between target and actual emissions is not closed by 2030, it is highly likely that the 2°C upper limit target will be exceeded.
DNV GL’s research paper explores the two aspects of low-carbon hydrogen production.
Blue hydrogen is produced from fossil fuels with carbon capture and storage to reduce the carbon footprint. It is expected to be used for building heating and industrial processes.
Green hydrogen is made using an electricity mix with low greenhouse gas emissions to power electrolysis of water. Green hydrogen is expected to be used, mostly, for transportation reasons.
According to the research, in around 2030, green hydrogen may match the price of blue hydrogen in some regions. Furthermore, the paper asserts that green hydrogen can benefit by harnessing surplus electricity from variable renewable energy sources such as wind and solar farms.
Moreover, the research identifies that Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, the UK and the US will perceive hydrogen as an attractive option for decarbonizing the heating of residential and commercial buildings at considerable scale.
Capturing and storing carbon is crucial to hydrogen’s role in decarbonizing energy because, however it is made, it must be low-carbon across its entire value chain. The research paper, also, suggests that policymakers should take into consideration the requirement for large-scale carbon capture and storage when low-carbon hydrogen production for heating residential and commercial areas is going to take place.
This research paper reaffirms the exciting potential for hydrogen as an energy carrier. It could play a significant role in decarbonizing the gas that will be delivered to our homes and businesses, while transforming the carbon footprint of mobility.
Liv A. Hovem, CEO, DNV GL - Oil & Gas stated.