12.12.2015 in Paris: A legally binding agreement is signed by 195 nations with the ambitious objective of limiting global warming to far below 2°C, which will necessitate a significant amount of the world’s economy to decarbonize their respective energy systems. Problems exist with this energy shift. It is necessary to install and integrate a sizable amount of renewable energy, yet it is difficult to ensure the system’s supply and stability. Scale-up decarbonization of energy end-use industries, like transportation, is required. In light of this, we are confident that it is time to firmly emphasize the distinctive contribution that hydrogen solutions provide. This shift to a smooth, low-carbon energy system could be made possible by technologies like hydrogen and fuel cells. Finishing this transformation will lead to much lower greenhouse gas emissions and better air quality.
The hydrogen adoption is going to be too sluggish without immediate, significant policy interventions from governments, according to a recent analysis by DNV titled “Hydrogen Forecast to 2050.” Despite the critical role hydrogen plays in global decarbonization, uptake is going to be too slow.
In 2030, just 0.5 percent of the power mix will contain hydrogen, and in 2050, 5 percent, according to the DNV research. The absorption of hydrogen would require to triple in order to provide 15% of the world’s energy consumption by the current century’s middle in order to meet the Paris Agreement’s goals.
Hydrogen should be prioritized for these industries, according to Remi Eriksen, who is the CEO of DNV and Group President. “Hydrogen is necessary to decarbonize sectors that cannot be electrified, such aviation, maritime, and high-heat manufacturing,” he added. The importance of hydrogen is not reflected in policies. In order to produce low-carbon hydrogen, they will also require to support expanding the production of renewable energy, carbon capture as well as storage.
As per Hydrogen Forecast to 2050, the electricity-based green hydrogen, which is created by separating hydrogen from water utilizing electrolyzers, will take the lead in terms of output by the century’s middle, making up 72% of total output. To run a 3,100-gigawatt electrolyzer, this will need an excess of renewable energy. The combined installed generation potential of solar and wind power today is more than twice as high.
In the medium future, blue hydrogen, which is made from natural gas having emissions removed, will play a bigger role (representing about 30% of total output in 2030), although as renewable energy output does grow and costs fall, it will become less competitive.
According to DNV’s projections, the cost to produce hydrogen for energy purposes worldwide between now and 2050 will be $ 6.8 trillion, plus another $ 180 billion for hydrogen pipelines and $ 530 billion for the construction and operation of ammonia terminals.
More than 50% of the globe’s hydrogen pipelines is going to be converted from natural gas pipelines since doing so will be more affordable—converting a pipeline will only cost between 10% and 35% as much as building a new one. Pipelines will be used to carry hydrogen across short to medium distances both within and between nations, but not across continents. The high expense of hydrogen liquefication for ship transportation and the hydrogen low energy density will further restrict the global trade in hydrogen. The more stable and easily shippable hydrogen derivative ammonia will be sold on a worldwide scale.
Hard-to-abate and high-heat manufacturing processes, such as the production of iron and steel, which now use natural gas and coal, is going to be the early adopters of hydrogen. The solution to decarbonizing heavy transport, including ships and aircraft, is hydrogen derivatives such as methanol and ammonia, but DNV predicts that these fuels won’t become widely available until the 2030s.
Both the hydrogen usage in power generation and the use of hydrogen in passenger vehicles will be minimal. Although it won’t catch on globally, hydrogen for building heating will start to become more popular in some areas with established gas infrastructure.