Green & Affordable Hydrogen

Scalability of green and affordable hydrogen is necessary

Hydrogen produced from water using renewable energy could be key to a carbon-free future, but its production is thought too expensive for industrial-scale application. Green hydrogen is seen as key to the energy transition, both as a carbon-free fuel and as a raw material for the steel or chemical industries. Produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen through electrolysis by using electricity generated from renewable resources, green hydrogen is becoming increasingly popular. However, its viability is questioned because of high production costs.
Policymakers see green hydrogen, which is made with renewable power without emitting carbon, as a vital tool to help shift economies away from planet-warming energy sources and to stave off climate change, but wants to reduce its sky-high costs. There are initiatives/startups working on ways of electrolysing which could also reduce the noble material use and make the cell durable. Hence, the cost would go down.

For a colourless gas, hydrogen gets referred to in very colourful terms. According to the nomenclature used by market research firm Wood Mackenzie, most of the gas that is already widely used as an industrial chemical is either brown or grey, Neither of these processes to get the hydrogen is exactly carbon-friendly.

A purportedly cleaner option is known as blue hydrogen, where the gas is produced by steam methane reformation but the emissions are curtailed using carbon capture and storage. This process could roughly halve the amount of carbon produced, but it’s still far from emissions-free.

Green hydrogen, in contrast, could almost eliminate emissions by using renewable energy — increasingly abundant and often generated at less-than-ideal times — to power the electrolysis of water. Additionally, the reduction of noble materials could also play a role to make Green hydrogen. However, green hydrogen is still expensive to produce today. In a report published in 2019 (using data from 2018), the International Energy Agency put the cost of green hydrogen at $3 to $7.50 per kilo, compared to $0.90 to $3.20 for production using steam methane reformation. The has to be addressed in order to rip the long term scalable benefit out of hydrogen.