Arabia Weather - Researchers around the world are working to innovate more efficient ways to produce green hydrogen, which is likely to contribute to reducing the consumption of fossil fuel sources, especially if it is produced using renewable energies, to emerge as a reliable future fuel in carbon neutrality efforts.
In the year before last (2021), the demand for hydrogen reached 94 million tons, equivalent to approximately 2.5% of the world’s energy consumption, and this demand is expected to rise to 115 million tons by the end of the current decade (2030), according to the expectations of the International Energy Agency. 2022, reviewed by the specialized energy platform.
The capacity of the global hydrogen market by 2050 could range between 600 and 650 million tons, enough to cover more than 20% of global energy needs, according to estimates.
Green hydrogen should be produced when large amounts of renewable electricity are available to avoid any additional carbon dioxide emissions in the electricity system, and the amounts of hydrogen produced in this way can be used flexibly over time in several application areas.
The results of a recent research study conducted by the German Rainer Lemoine Institute concluded that expanding the use of renewable energy sources represents a crucial element for producing green, low-carbon hydrogen, according to the institute’s official website.
Green hydrogen is a fundamental pillar of the energy transition. It can be used as a raw material and fuel instead of environmentally sensitive fossil fuel sources, such as oil, coal, and natural gas.
The study found that steel production and long-distance transportation appear at the forefront of areas where green hydrogen could be used in the future, due to the lack of sustainable alternatives that can replace it in these two sectors.
To achieve the climate targets set by the German government, these areas should be decarbonized as much as possible, by replacing green hydrogen with coal-generated electricity sources in power plants.
It is possible to produce green hydrogen in an environmentally friendly way if the electrolysis devices needed to produce this clean fuel are used as flexibly as possible. The flexible operation of electrolyzers means they produce hydrogen, in particular, when there are large amounts of inexpensive green electricity in the grid. However, without this flexible operation, electrolyzers would only operate for a few hours a year.
Due to the high share of fossil fuels in the German electricity mix to date, emissions are generally produced in the electricity system.
The results of the study indicated how carbon emissions can be avoided in the process of producing hydrogen. In this regard, the study said: “For hydrogen to help the energy transition, it must be produced in an environmentally friendly way, and only then will the resulting emissions decrease. For the year 2030, our calculations show the possibility of producing green hydrogen with a capacity of up to 33 terawatt-hours in Germany, assuming flexible operation.” For electrolysis devices.
“Demand has risen to 133 terawatt-hours, and flexibility and reasonable use are very important in the application and production of hydrogen, with the aim of enhancing its efficiency and accelerating the pace of emission reductions,” said Managing Director of the Rainer Lemoine Institute Katherine Goldmeier.
If the German government cannot achieve the goals of expanding the use of renewable sources, and if electrolyzers do not operate with the required flexibility, carbon emissions will rise by approximately 9%, according to the warnings of the study monitored by the specialized energy platform.
Caroline Dahling, head of policy and communications at Green Planet Energy, which recommended the study, said: “Flexible operation of the electrolyzers, with just a few hours of full load, is the watchword for the transition, given that even in the early stages of planned carbon neutrality efforts To reach it in 2045, we must avoid carbon emissions as much as possible.”
In the long term, green hydrogen should only be used when there are no alternatives, according to Dahling.
The study highlights the need for concrete action on the national hydrogen strategy, saying: “The German government must ensure hydrogen production in conjunction with the expansion of electricity production from renewable sources,” according to statements monitored by the specialized energy platform.
Dahling emphasized that only in this way can hydrogen fulfill its promise of being a crucial factor in the energy transition.
Arabia Weather App
Download the app to receive weather notifications and more..